Thursday, September 23, 2010

Another "slap from Vienna" as Cardinal Schonborn hosts Medjugorje "seers" at his cathedral

What is going on with Cardinal Schonborn?  He is not helping the cause for Medjugorje.  If anything, he is pushing the kind of ecclesial buttons that will force the Holy See into responding sooner than later.

In my last post I explained how Cardinal Schonborn is giving Medjugorje "seers" a platform at the Vienna cathedral - something which is out of harmony with tradition in the church on alleged apparitions.  It also causes confusion and disunity when the bishop of another diocese (and another country) allows promotion of a phenomenon in his cathedral which is prohibited in the diocese of origin, and forbidden on Church property anywhere within Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

By this action, Cardinal Schonborn, no matter how well intentioned, offers a "slap" from Vienna not only to the Bishop of Mostar-Duvno, but to the entire Bishop's Conference of Bosnia and Herzegovina. 
In a matter of minutes [event is now over, but screen shots and video links are embedded in this post], Mary TV will televise the event from St. Stephens Cathedral, including the "apparition" which Ivan and Maria are scheduled to have at Standard Apparition Time (SAT) of 6:40 p.m. (advertised here as 12:40 p.m.).  See here a FreezePage snapshot taken a few minute ago of the advertisement.

[Edit on Sept 27, 2010: English language viewers: can view the event which is uploaded now to MaryTV, and broken down into four parts (scroll when you get there) .... German language viewers can see edited clips at  Cardinal Schonborn speaks here], the Rosary and "vision" are here, and testimonial of Ivan and Maria from the St. Stephen sanctuary here, and the homily is here (Cardinal Schonborn did not appear to be at the Mass)]

Further, Bishop Ratko Peric of Mostar-Duvno is not some "spirit of Vatican II bishop", but a man of considerable orthodoxy, and a very good teacher of the faith. He has been vilified by the "Medjugorje Movement" to the point that there is a vein of contempt for him among devotees. Each time a brother bishop pulls a stunt like this in Vienna, it only deepens that contempt people have for this apostolic successor. The concerns he has raised consistently, as well as those of his predecessor are reasonable and he should be treated with more respect.

It says in the above:

September 23
(Padre Pio's Feast Day)

Medjugorje visionaries Ivan and Marija will be streamed live in English from Cardinal Schoenborn's Cathedral, St. Stephens in Vienna. (Kathnet will be streaming in German.)

10:00 AM EDT: (4:00 PM Vienna time) Testimonies from Sr. Elvira and the Cenacolo Community

11:00 AM EDT: Testimonies from Ivan and Marija

12:00 Noon EDT: Rosary

12:40 PM EDT: Apparition to Ivan and Marija

1:00 PM EDT: Mass

2:00 PM EDT: Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament

3:00 PM EDT: Adoration ends


  • At around 10:40 a.m. my time, Mother Elvira, foundress of Cenacolo Community, just addressed the crowd, using a short prayer with a title for the Blessed Virgin Mary which not approved by the Church when she said, "Mother of Medjugorje, pray for us".

  • 11:20 a.m. my time, Ivan Dragicevic and Maria Pavlovic-Lunetti give their testimony from the sanctuary of St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna about how "Our Lady" appears to them.
  • Things are going on according to schedule (not the printed schedule, but the "apparition" schedule.  I was trying to figure out why they would start the Rosary at Noon when it is well known that the "seers" of Medjugorje usually break mid-Rosary to have their "vision" at "Standard Apparition Time" (SAT) of 6:40 p.m. local time where ever they are.  It is now 12:12 here where I am, so I think we can pretty much plan on seeing the "apparition" right on cue at 12:40 p.m. if they delay things for another 5-10 minutes.

  • 12:22 Rosary underway.  I can't help but think how distracting these events are to the Rosary itself.  Are people truly meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary when a "seer" falls into "ecstasy" in the middle of it? Or, are they focused on the apparent vision which seems to be taking place.  Not to worry... the camera which is currently trained on a picture of the BVM (same one at top of post), will soon shift to the faces of Ivan and Maria as they have their "vision" in St. Stephen's cathedral.  Cardinal Schonborn has not been seen ... .yet.  A photo-op must be in here somewhere.  Wait for it...

  • The Rosary stops at around 12:40 my time so Ivan and Maria can have their vision. I think it was just about over.  Ivan nodding his head and smiling at 12:41. Maria now moving her lips. Ivan nods again.  Ivan moving lips.  Ivan smiling as Maria has a somber look on her face.  People gawking all around.  Ivan continues with big smiles as Maria holds a nearly distressed look on her face at 12:43 my time.  Ivan nodding again.  Camera pans away to people watching.  Deafening silence.  Camera pans back to Ivan and Maria.  Ivan and Maria's lips moving simultaenously. It all ends at 12:47 with the Sign of the Cross at 12:47.

Here is a shot of Ivan smiling and the serious look on the face of Maria.
  • At 12:48 the musicians begin playing the official "anthem" of Medjugorje.
  • Now they prepare for Holy Mass. 
As we wait for Mass to start, I have to ask:  Am I really suppose to believe that the Blessed Virgin Mary, a model of humility and obedience, would appear to "seers" in the Vienna Cathedral, when the bishop whom the 1991 Zadar Declaration states has authority for the pastoral care and attention "in Medjugorje and all connected with it" has prohibited such things on Church property?  Does it require a Cardinal in the Vatican to explain that if the "seers" are not permitted to have such public events in their home diocese, or in their home country, they ought not be given such publicty on Church property in any diocese? 

Are the "seers" disobedient for having "visions" in public?  If the same bishop has prohibited the release of "messages", then how does the world continue to get them if not by an act of disobedience? In 2006 the local bishop called these "visionaries" and those "behind the messages" to obedience.  In 2007, Archbishop Angelo Amato, then Secretary of the CDF, invited the bishops of Tuscany, Italy, to share with priests of the diocese that same 2006 homily (see fax in the link).  Archbishop Amato is now on the Medjugorje commission, and was also the one who authorized Bishop Peric to share the canonical status of Tomislav Vlasic who was being investigated by the Holy See "in the context of Medjugorje" (words of Abp Amato).  Vlasic then requested laicization.  In late 2009, Bishop Peric released a series of statements, which included more prohibitions (see "Part 3")

So, would the Blessed Virgin Mary appear to disobedient "seers" in the Cathedral of a Cardinal who is out of step with how unapproved apparitions are traditionally handled, and who disregards the matter of collegiality?  That this event would happen on the Feast of St. Pio of Pietrelcina is even more offensive, given his solid obedience, even in the face of persecution from within the Church.  He never wavered on that. 

Mass is underway.  More in a moment...

  • Cardinal Schonborn, if he is there, is not seen.  While I cannot warm up to tie-dyed chasubles and do not feel that guitars meet the appropriate standard for liturgical instruments for holy Mass, it was otherwise reverently celebrated.  The homily focused on St. Pio. 

  • Not only did this create a form of scandal among people in a packed cathedral, but for who knows how many millions watching it on (English) and on which broadcast it in German. 

  • At 2:42 Ivan is talking about his "apparition" which just took place earlier (this is about 8:42 local time in Vienna).  I did not catch the first part of what he said.  He is now talking about how "Our Lady blessed objects" and how she "blessed all of you priests".  I'm confused because the schedule shows this as a period of Adoration.  I was away for a time and was unsure if the monstrance was brought out yet or not.  If this is happening during Adoration, it ought not be.  I'm sure there will be a complete printout online of all that he said. 

  • OK - Adoration apparently has not yet begun.  Maria is asking people to stay for Adoration, "Our program is not yet done". Maria spoke only for a moment. 

Here comes Cardinal Schonborn to the podium.    He thanks Maria and Ivan for coming again.  He thanks them for their service.  He asks God to pay them back a hundred-fold for what they are doing tirelessly. 

Three things he wants to say (this part I cannot type fast enough to keep up with so we will look for a transcript for later).  Here's what I was able to capture...

  • He is talking about the depth of prayer which shows what Our Lady says at the end of her message "thanks for responding to my call". 

  • He is speaking about the "miracle of tears" and I did not catch who it was he was talking about from some centuries ago.  If someone heard it, drop in a comment.

  • The third thing I was able to catch part of because of how he told the story, pausing in between.  He now speaks of something he calls amusing. He's heard from so many witnesses from Medjugorje.  He says he took a train after his visit to Medjugorje and he felt a wink from Our Lady on the train to pray the Rosary and Breviary.  A very voluminous lady - he clarified as "fat" - sat next to him, and he was annoyed, saying "not virtuous".  She began to talk to him and he didn't like it.  She asked him where he is a parish priest.  He responded, that he wanted to read.  She asked him again.  Annoyed again, he replied that he was the Archbishop of Vienna.  She then apologized for disturbing him.  Then she explained that her husband was in Medjugorje, he climbed up the hill and after coming back down was never so friendly as he is now with her.  And she said, she wants to go to Medjugorje also now.  Cardinal Schonborn then said, "perhaps she will also be so friendly".  
Is it just me?  I don't find that amusing at all. We all suffer from human fallen nature and can experience such things, but they are better left for the privacy of a confessional.  I mean, what if this woman is watching the broadcast?  Good grief!

I'm signing off on this blogpost as they enter Adoration after which this all concludes. 

How long will it take for Cardinal Schonborn to get another private audience with Pope Benedict XVI?  While there are indeed good fruits coming from Medjugorje, which most would attribute to the unapproved apparition, rather than a return to the Sacraments, there are also many bad fruits.  Let's keep in mind that many fine men converted and heard the call to the priesthood through the Legionaries of Christ.  Yet, lurking in the background, were the abuses of the founder.  Maciel was a fraud.  One lesson we learn from the Legionaries - something to consider with regards to Medjugorje.  Good fruits can happen even where there is sinful activity and fraud. Where sin increases, grace abounds all the more (Romans 5:20-21)

Further reading:

Te Deum Laudamus! Home
The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!
Note: The recommended links below are automatically generated by the tool, so they are not necessarily related content.


PRAISE GOD said...

It is wonderful! So glad that we have Mary TV! Lourdes and Fatima happened the same way and the visionaries are not being disobedient nor is the cardinal, please get the facts correct. We had our life changing experiences in Medjuogjre in 1990,
God bless You!

Nimal Mendis said...

Your article on the question of Our Lady's apparitions is excellent and so is your ongoing commentary on the 'event' taking place at the Vienna cathedral. Yours is a clear and precise defence of Our Lady and the Catholic Church that Our Lord has established on this earth which is being bombarded with false things by satan, as St Paul himself says to Timothy two thousand years ago.However, the gates of hell will not prevail as Our Lord himself said.
Thank you for the work you do.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

I am very glad that your lives were changed. Do you attribute your change to the alleged apparitions, or to the Sacraments?

We will have to disagree on whether the "seers" are committing an act of disobedience by appearing in public like this, and ultimately disseminating "messages" which have been prohibited by the local bishop.

The 1991 Zadar Declaration which is still in effect upholds his authority in this regard, and the 2007 memo from the Bishops of Tuscany to priests of the diocese acknowledges that authority. They were encouraged by the then secretary of the CDF, Abp Amato, to read the Bishop's 2006 homily which offered some strong words about the public promotion of Medjugorje as if it were authentic.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

As an aside, I have been having interent problems which take me offline for hours or a day at a time. The comcast crew is outside doing something, so I may not be able to moderate comments for periods of time. Please be patient.

Wade St. Onge said...

I do not know what has happened to Cardinal Schonborn. From being chief author of the Catechism and possible papal successor a few years ago to strange statements and public and enthusiastic support for a dubious apparition which the Vatican will soon rule upon - a ruling which cannot come soon enough for me.

PRAISE GOD said...

Well Diane, in answer to your question in a simple way, I would say that the minute I heard that Our Lady was appearing in Medjugorje, I was 're-born' in my heart and soul. That is the best way I can explain it. I had to go there and before I went there, I got my life back with the sacraments as my husband and I had 4 months to prepare for our pilgrimage as my testimony states. So, I would say that yes, Our Lady of Medjugojre 'called' me' back to Her Son, Jesus. That is what She does best. We are eternally grateful to Our Lady of Medjugorje.

As far as facts on Medjugorje, there seems to be a lot of secular people doing their own investigation and publishing their idea of the facts and I think that is not proper but certainly allowed as free speech.

All in all, I came to the conclusion that I have made a decision to just love the opponents of Medjugorje and pray for them and Jesus and Mary will handle the rest. You can't take away or minimilize my supernatural experiences from Heaven.

We are overjoyed at this beautiful presentation at the cathedral in Austria today. Austria and the cathedral was part of our pilgrimage in 1990 before going to Medjugorje so it brings back a lot of miraculous memories. Yes, our whole trip was filled with the supernatural.

"Our Lord gives to souls of prayer a deep understanding of Himself. He never deceives them."
***St. Peter Julian Eymard

God Bless and I pray that people will be more loving and kind towards one another in this matter.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

@ "PRAISE GOD"....

Thank you for your response. You answered as I thought you might. You attribute your conversion to an entity which is not proven as authentic by the Church yet, but still have said nothing about the grace which flows from the Sacraments you likely turned to in the midst of your conversion.

Did you go make use of Sacramental Confession in Medjugorje?

Did you go to Holy Mass in Medjugorje?

Do you go to Sunday Mass every week now?

Do you continue to make use of Sacramental Confession?

Also, there are graces which flow from Church approved devotions. The Rosary belongs to the Church, not to Medjugorje. It has been with us for many centuries and the graces that come from reciting it are time-tested.

The Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary, has been around a long time, as well. Many Medjugorje devotees make use of this time-tested, Church approved devotion. Ditto with the Divine Mercy Chaplet. What about the graces that come from these things? Could time invested in them be playing a role in your inner, continued conversion?

Do you spend time in Adoration? There are graces that come from sitting before the Blessed Sacrament.

I just find it very interesting that the graces which people receive are not attributed to these things, but to an apparition which has not been approved at any level of the Church, and has been called deeply into question.

PRAISE GOD said...

Wasn't the Cardinal wonderful! Thank you Mary Tv and Our Lady of Medjugorje! Thank you to the visionaries for their faithfullness to Our Lady's call! And thank you Diane for being you!

observant one said...

I'm not understanding why you weren't able to "catch" certain facts given by the good Cardinal. It was all translated into English as it went. Very understandable and very well organized. What a blessing for a Europe so fallen from its faithful spirit. And what devotion, respect, and wonderful examples of faith by that huge crowd of faithful - and that for 6 hours! The adoration moments were so very grace filled by that wonderful example of a true son of Mary. His newest vocations, which are so very Marian, were graced very much by their shepherd's example before them. We witnessed here, in something quite unusual these days indeed, a shepherd with a hungry flock that did not get denied their graces/food.

As St. Teresa of Avila would no doubt respond to this sad commentary - "May God protect us from gloomy saints"!

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

I have to break this into two parts because I want to requote "Observant one"

I'm not understanding why you weren't able to "catch" certain facts given by the good Cardinal. It was all translated into English as it went. Very understandable and very well organized.

Perhaps your fingers were fast enough to have captured all of those "facts" he stated. I offered to provide text if a transcript is offered.

What a blessing for a Europe so fallen from its faithful spirit. And what devotion, respect, and wonderful examples of faith by that huge crowd of faithful - and that for 6 hours!

Are all of these same people willing to 6 hours per week, or even 2 hours per week, in adoration, consistently?

It's always a blessing when people return to the Sacraments, and develop devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. However, since the Church has not declared that the lady of Medjugorje is the BVM, is it not jumping the gun for people to talk and act in a Cathedral setting as if it is her?

What you are describing is the "wave of enthusiasm" I spoke of earlier. Interest in the truth is set aside, along with respect for the local bishop (and by extension the bishop's conference of BiH, and the commission) because people want to force their version of "truth" through enthusiasm. Why not wait? Bernadette didn't go around saying the BVM was appearing to her. Yet, the Medjugorje "seers" do. Has anyone in the Church cleared them to say this?

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

The adoration moments were so very grace filled by that wonderful example of a true son of Mary.

Mary's deep humility manifested itself in the highest degrees of obedience. That is a very good measure of a true son - one who imitates his Mother. Bishops must sometimes submit their will to the will of another bishop where that other bishop has authority in a matter. While the final judgement on Medjugorje rests with the Holy See, the Bishop of Mostar-Duvno was given authority to set pastoral guidelines and directives in the 1991 Zadar Declaration. When he did so in his 2006 homily - calling upon the "seers" and "those behind the messages" to cease, it was noted by the CDF in a 2007 document that was made public.

Cardinal Schonborn would have showed great humility in submitting his will to host the "seers" of an unapproved, controversial "apparition" in his cathedral to the will of the Ordinary of Mostar who has prohibited such things locally. It would have also been pleasing to Mary because she surely values "collegiality" which is discussed in the dogmatic constitution, Lumen Gentium (there's a whole section on bishops and authority you might want to read) Common sense dictates that other bishops don't give them a platform in such cases.

I am assuming you are referring to Cardinal Schonborn as a "true son of Mary".

Let me ask you this: Is Bishop Peric a true son of Mary? Please explain your answer.

His newest vocations, which are so very Marian, were graced very much by their shepherd's example before them.

He would do well to teach his new seminarians, by example, about collegiality, filial reverence, and what has been traditionally done by bishops with "seers" of unapproved private revelations from other dioceses: Don't give them a platform on Church property before the Church hands down a judgment, especially where there is as much controversy as there is with Medjugorje.

We witnessed here, in something quite unusual these days indeed, a shepherd with a hungry flock that did not get denied their graces/food.

Perhaps you know whether Cdl Schonborn leads adoration on a regular basis the way he did today. Does it take a stageshow with "seers" of unapproved apparitions to do such a thing? Does he regularly lead a public Rosary?

Any bishop who fosters Marian and Eucharistic devotion - by example and leadership - will have no problems with getting vocations. We see this in various parts of the world where orthodox and devout bishops have fostered these things. We see it in parishes where they are fostered.

If Cardinal Schonborn is doing these things regularly in his diocese, perhaps and could stream them live. Wouldn't that be nice?

With regards to your statement about St. Teresa of Avila, you might want to go back into her writings and study a little more. She encouraged not paying much attention to these kinds of phenomena.

Nick said...

Aren't you not supposed to be able to move during an ecstasy?

How is it Ivan can nod his head?

What type of cologne does he wear?

(I'm kidding on that last question)

Oh! I wrote a recent blog on Medjugorje here: Gold Mouths & Silver Tongues

Wade St. Onge said...

Diane, your last sentence is a good example of how much the Saints get "cherry-picked". Many are not interested in what St. Teresa or any Saint advises - unless it suits their purposes.

St. Teresa warned much more strongly against following apparitions than she did against being gloomy.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

@Wade...agreed on St. Teresa, who discouraged the pursuit of apparitions.

It was the last sentance of "observant one" which was an example of a cherry-picked thought from a saint. I merely pointed out what you did in my last sentence, that Teresa wanted no part of such things.

In fact, Carmelites would do well to read the words of Fr. Aloysius Deeney, OCD who is the General Delegate for the OCDS (secular Carmelites) in Rome. Use the search tool and the word "Medjugorje" within a blog he set up for his speeches which are now in a book.

Here are two examples:

Deeney: The principle is that formation is not information. Formation is being accompanied in the process. You get someone joining Carmel, who has been formed personally in Our Lady of Medjugorje, who can take the information and twist it.

Deeney: You’ve seen in the talk that I gave in New Orleans and you have seen it in other places where I have written where I talk about people who talk about Our Lady of Medjugorje hours and hours. It is obvious how that throws the community off. So everybody can really see how if you really have wrong things, things that aren’t Carmelite things, you can see why that person doesn’t belong.

Those are some pretty hard words by the General Delegate to Secular Carmelites.

They should be read in context, so follow the link and read his blog. There are only a few posts there. You can actually use the "edit-find" tool with Medjugorje and get most of it.

The recently published with all of these speeches, and truly a great read overall for any secular Carmelite or person considering becoming one:

Welcome to the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites

TNP said...


I need to pray for you! You do such a wonderful job in countering these comments from those who insist on veering from the Church in favor of supporting what they will. I am very grateful that you are able to reply with such clarity and charity, while holding fast to the truth. I will keep you in my prayers and thank God for your efforts.

Dan said...

So your orthodoxy exceeds that of Pope Benedict XVI, Pope John Paul II, and Blessed Mother Teresa, who speak positively of Medjugorje?

I would usually be the last to issue this rebuke, but now I do so freely: beware of becoming a pharisee.

If you would like to see my own Medjugorje experience, you can read of it on my own blog,

PRAISE GOD said...

To the opponents of Medjugojre--

I guess if everyone was 'obedient according to your theories' - then there would have never been an approved Fatima, or Lourdes because no one would go in the beginning.

And you opponents should really be knider and nicer, you seem rather hatefilled and arrogant.
If you look at the opponents of Lourdes in particular, they acted the same way.

And wishing you a blessed day.

RC said...

While Pope Benedict is aware of the good intentions of people who go to Medjugorje, he has never endorsed it. He wrote to a German layman in July 1998, saying that favorable quotes attributed to him -- an eight-page list of them -- were "completely invented" (in German, "frei erfunden").

For what it's worth, he also denied quotes attributed to Pope John Paul II.

But you don't have to believe that if you don't want to.

Traditional Catholic said...

Francis Cardinal George also invited - or at minimum allowed - the visionaries this past summer to Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago. Cardinal Schonborn is not alone in his "disobedient" support. I think you should go after him too! (Being the president of our very own bishop's conference!)

Patrick Coffin said...

Dan -- can we see some evidence for the pro-Medjugorje sentiments from John Paul II, Benedict XVI or Bl. Mother Teresa? By evidence, I don't mean boilerplate claims cut and pasted from one of the pro-Medj websites.

I can show you evidence of non constat de supernaturalitate. Two bishops and a handful of Episcopal Commissions have held firmly (and overwhelmingly) to it since, oh, around 1981.

I await your evidence.

Traditional Catholic said...

Actually, there are of ton of wayward prelates in the U.S. who support Medjugorje. Disappointingly, add Bishop Finn of Kansas City to to the group which is causing so much trouble. I just googled it and apparently he went to Medjuorje as a pilgrim in 2006!

Wade St. Onge said...

Diane, sorry for the misunderstanding in my post - I was not saying you were doing the cherry-picking; rather, I meant your last sentence pointed out the cherry-picking done by the previous poster. I know - I kind of worded it funny.

Wade St. Onge said...

PRAISE GOD and Dan, I address these objections in my blog piece (Diane has a link to it). Bless you.

MariaR said...

In Fatima, the Church did not stepped in until the Miracle of the Sun happened. The children were not forbidden to go to the Cova Da Iria
to see Our Lady of the Rosary. Not one person was forbidden to go.
In Medjugorje, the Bishop has asked the seers to stop and the people spreading the messages to stop.

In Lourdes, The Church did not stepped in either, they stayed on sidelines. The difference between Fatima and Lourdes is that in Lourdes the Government boarded up the Grotto of Massabielle and passed the order that noone was allowed to go there. This was the government and not the Church.
Unlike in Medjugorje, the only thing that was boarded up was a Church that was presumptly performing ilicit sacraments and this was to keep the Bishop out.

You see, when people begin to compare Fatima and Lourdes, two approved apparitions of Mary with an unapproved apparition like Medjugorje, it is difficult to keep Medjugorje up to par with those because it is not the same.

One of the most important difference that still exists between Medjugorje and most approved apparitions of Mary is that it has not vindicated itself nor supported the visionaries in
making itself known in the early days of the apparitions. This is what Mary our Mother has done everytime she comes to visit us.

Lourdes: Healing Waters, Immaculate Conception, Sainthood of Bernadette.
Fatima: Miracle of the sun where it came plummeting to the earth and dried everything, prophecies that came to pass, sainthood of Jacinta and Francisco.
Guadalupe: Miracle of the Roses and the Tilma, prophecies came to pass,
sainthood of Juan Diego.


PRAISE GOD said...

I think this is an intersting note to bring up---it is from the apparitions of Lourdes--

Our Lady of Lourdes is the name used to refer to the Marian apparition that appeared before various individuals in separate occasions around Lourdes, France. The apparitions of Our Lady of Lourdes began on 11 February 1858, when Bernadette Soubirous, a 14-year-old peasant girl from Lourdes admitted, when questioned by her mother, that she had seen a "lady" in the cave of Massabielle, about a mile from the town, while she was gathering firewood with her sister and a friend. [1] Similar appearances of the "lady" took place on seventeen further occasions that year. Bernadette Soubirous was canonized as a saint, and many Christians believe her apparitions to have been of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Pope Pius IX authorized the local bishop to permit the veneration of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes in 1862.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

From a post I just made in my Medjugorje blog, when I experienced technical problems in Patrick Madrid's post on the same topic.

We all know that pilgrimages are permitted. However, there are conditions attached though - very specific conditions. They are not permitted to be organized at the parish or diocesan level. In chronological order we have this explained by Vatican officials.

In Prot. No. 154/81-01985, dated March 23, 1996, then Archbishop Bertone stated....

official pilgrimages to Medjugorje, understood as a place of authentic Marian apparitions, are not permitted to be organized either on the parish or on the diocesan level, because that would be in contradiction to what the Bishops of former Yugoslavia affirmed in their fore mentioned Declaration

Then Vatican Spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls added in August of 1996:

The problem is if you systematically organize pilgrimages, organize them with the bishop and the church, you are giving a canonical sanction to the facts of Medjugorje ... This is different from people going in a group who bring a priest with them in order to go to confession...

Question: When a bishop allows a "seer" of Medjugorje, how is he not giving the appearance of canonical sanction to the facts of Medjugorje? Answer: He is giving the appearance of sanction, which is why we have people running around dropping Cardinal Schonborn's with regards to Medjugorje.

And, finally in Pr. No 154/81-05922, dated May 26, 1998, then Archbishop Bertone again responds, this time to Msgr. Gilbert Aubry:

Finally, as regards pilgrimages to Medjugorje, which are conducted privately, this points out that they are permitted on condition that they are not regarded as an authentification of events still taking place and which still call for an examination by the Church.

(in other words, if a giga-billion people flock to see a magician saw in half, a woman in an box, it does not make it true that she was actualy sawed in half).

All of these communications are collected in one blogpost here: Are pilgrimages permitted to Medjugorje or not?

PRAISE GOD said...

Stop with all your so called facts, you seem to be so smart, it makes me sick.....Both Popes said we go to Medj. and we went and it brought us back to the sacraments. Period.

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

In that last post, my question, based on what Joaquin Navarro-Valls said about pilgrimages. First, what the former Vatican spokesman said:

Then Vatican Spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls added in August of 1996:

The problem is if you systematically organize pilgrimages, organize them with the bishop and the church, you are giving a canonical sanction to the facts of Medjugorje ... This is different from people going in a group who bring a priest with them in order to go to confession...

Question: When a bishop allows a "seer" of Medjugorje to have visions in his cathedral, and speak about the "apparitions", how is he not giving the appearance of canonical sanction to the facts of Medjugorje?

Answer: A bishop or priest is giving the appearance of canonical sanction when they host "seers" of Medjugorje, which is why we have people running around dropping Cardinal Schonborn's with regards to Medjugorje.

With regards to quote about Lourdes, I cannot answer anything until you provide the source of your quote. Who wrote that?

Secondly, can you show me examples of Bernadette being hosted in parishes and cathedrals to speak about her apparitions, prior to approval from the Church?

We are talking apples and oranges.

While we are speaking about the bishop, I would like your opinion on the fax sent by the Bishops of Tuscany to the priests of the Diocese. In that memo, the Bishops quote then secretary of the CDF, Abp Amato who encouraged them to read Bishop Peric's 2006 homily in which he called the "seers" of Medjugorje to obedience. Here it is again.

If the Bishops of Tuscany were encouraged to honor those words of Bishop Peric by the CDF is it now only limited to Medjugorje and Tuscany?

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...

"PRAISE GOD" said: Stop with all your so called facts, you seem to be so smart, it makes me sick.....Both Popes said we go to Medj. and we went and it brought us back to the sacraments. Period.


Please provide something which shows that both popes said you could go to Medjugorje. I just want to see the context.

There is nothing I have seen, which does not attach conditions to those visits. If you were unaware of this, it is unfortunate.

Earlier, I asked if you felt that any graces which keep you in the faith could be attributed to the very Sacraments to which you claim Medjugorje brought you back to.

If you don't mind, help me to understand that. Assuming you go to Mass each Sunday, are you getting any graces from holy Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, from the Rosary, etc.?

Or, do you attribute those graces exclusively to "Our Lady of Medjugorje"?

PRAISE GOD said...

So now, you should have looked up Our Lady of Grace and it says THAT ALL GRACES COME THROUGH OUR BLESSED MOTHER. She brings supernatural grace to the the soul and chisels the hearts of stone..

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...


I regret that I cannot anything about Our Lady of Grace other than schools and parishes online. Can you please send me a link, or at least give me the name of the book you are quoting from?

I need to ask my question....again. Do you believe that graces come from assisting at Holy Mass or spending time in Eucharistic Adoration? Or, from Sacramental Confession, prayer, etc?

Kevin said...

I think we are losing fact of something....

Whatever graces one perceives they receive or do not receive from an apparition, they are wise to put little stock in them. While God does not deceive, the evil one certainly does. He may even use that which is holy if it can puff up our pride into deception. So we must ALWAYS be on guard.

Myself being a convert, I am never one to begrudge those who have come to the faith and stand firm within it. Yet I would suggest to never place much stock in emotional experiences.

And certainly always be obedient to your Bishop. That is where the roots of true holiness grow from. Do the "seers" promote actively obedience to the Bishop? How can we demonstrate this?

As far as His Eminence, his path as of late is saddening, but not surprising Wade. For my series on the Incarnation, I have been reading the books of Chronicles and Kings. We see Solomon, Uzziah, Joash, Jehu and numerous other Kings and princes who started out righteous and great men, and ended up not so great. A reminder that we must always trust in grace and the power to transform us.

Or, as a traditionalist, I could just say "AHA! See, we told you they are all modernists!" Not really though. :)

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...


We weren't talking about whether Mary is the Mediatrix of Graces.

What you don't know, because the Church has not told you it is worthy of belief, is whether the "lady of Medjugorje" is the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The Church has made no such declaration.

My whole point was that many Medjugorje devotees I've run across give no credit to the newfound sacramental life they embark on, or go return to.

That is a problem. Period.

Kevin said...

"then there would have never been an approved Fatima, or Lourdes because no one would go in the beginning.

There's a difference between this, and going when they flat out say don't go. The bishops didn't rise up to condemn Fatima, saying don't go. While the seers no doubt experienced some grief from the local Bishop, obedience was part of the Fatima message.

The message also had an ardent public supporter in Pope Pius XII. Whatever JPII or Benedict said or didn't say, it was not some glowing endorsement.

This is why I avoid all private revelations, even approved ones. there is a tendency upon many (especially of the Charismatic variety) who hold up these revelations as part and parcel of the Catholic faith. Even Fatima isn't part of the Catholic faith. The message might be consistent, but a Catholic is free to reject the message provided he does not condemn others and contradict the Catholic Faith. (Though his piety would be questioned in my view if he were to publicly criticize those for fostering a devotion the Church has publicly encouraged.)

I guess I'd also like to know precedents from tradition where a "seer" can envoke Mary to provide a revelation at will, and has been doing so for almost 2 decades. Not since the prophets of the Old Testament has someone had the "hotline" for that long.

LarryD said...

Diane - keep up the great work.

It's not just attachment to apparitions such as Medj. that are dangerous - zealous attachment to approved apparitions is equally dangerous. I have a coworker who adheres to Fr Gruner's "position" on Fatima, and any discussion on it becomes an exercise in patience for me.

(Diane - you might know him - he's a member of your parish).

Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS said...


One thing I can tell you about Assumption Grotto, is that Fr. Perrone is very firm about not permitting devotions, flyers, advertisements, etc., for apparitions which have not gained some level of approval.

On the other end, he is also firm about not permitting "Grunerites" and "Feenyism" to get a grip in the community.

That does not mean there is not a person here and there who subscribe to these things, which I myself find objectionable, but their numbers are few, and relatively hidden.

In fact, I have witnessed such people admonished by fellow parishioners when they do bring up those arguments.

Sadly, Antonio Socci's book, the Fourth Secret of Fatima, has not helped. That book, like some of the Grunerite material, invents dots in order to keep the line going in a direction that suits their argument. What is so objectionable, is that in order to accept some of those theories, you have to resort to also accepting conspiracy at the hands of very high ranking people. One such zealot implicates Ratzinger. The best part is, there are dots missing and they just conveniently fill in the blank with surmising.

It's just a bunch of intellectual dishonesty. In the end, the real message of Fatima is lost while they focus on conspiracy theories.

I think this discussion has run it's course and I'm closing comments now. Unfortunately, blogger does not permit an expiration date on blogpost comboxes, so I will just have to do it manually.