Memo to a certain Medjugorje adherent who is attacking skeptics (again)

October 20, 2010 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

Relax. Settle down. Be at peace.


There’s no need to obsess the way you are over what a tiny handful of people may think about Medjugorje. If some, like I, doubt that it’s an authentic apparition, so what? Why does that rob you of your peace? Your most recent behavior indicates that you are unsettled, anxious, and worried about the fact that some are skeptical about Medjugorje. This turmoil and defensiveness exhibited in your recent public comments is not from the Holy Spirit.


Pause, take a deep breath, and ponder these words from Scripture:

“If this plan or this undertaking is of men, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” (Acts 5:38-39) 

Please remember that this passage is just as important for you as it is for anyone who doubts Medjugorje. Think about that. Just pray for God’s will to be done in this matter.


And then, spend some time thinking prayerfully about this wise advice from Saint Teresa of Avila:



“Let nothing disturb you, let nothing afright you.
Nothing is wanting in w
hom God possesses.
God alone suffices.
All things are passing.
God never ceases.
Patient endurance attains all things.”

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113 Responses to “Memo to a certain Medjugorje adherent who is attacking skeptics (again)”
  1. Paul Baylis says:

    It's very strange indeed this world we live in. The exhortations to relax and be at peace are exactly the message that I, as a Medjugorje believer, want to pass on to certain un-chilled skeptics. Just relax, be at peace, the Vatican will complete its task very soon. In the meantime, find something else to do. Let people be if they want to go to Medjugorje. Just because you have what you think is a eureka "Aha…look at what Donal Foley says here…" moment, just relax, maybe Donal Foley is wrong. Leave it in the hands of the Vatican. You don't even need to get upset if a Medjugorje proponent defends against the attacks of an anti-M'er. Chill out!

  2. Carl says:

    I think its important to point out that while people may have different opinions on Medjugorje no official ruling has been made from the Church. So we are free to believe either way.

    I also wanted to share my experience in Medjugorje in 1989. Medjugorje was a place where pilgrims would come to pray, worship, and sing songs. We also had daily Mass in my group. It was a spiritual retreat. People's faith was increased and there was a peace that was felt there. Some found faith there. I don't regret having gone one bit.

    While I was there the Jesus on my rosary turned blood red. It was previously silver and I woke up and the next day it had turned red. I can't explain how it happened, but I showed it to the group I was with and they were also amazed.

    Whether you believe in the apparitions or not there was no question that whenever there are 2 or more gathered in Christ's name there he is with them. There certainly was a lot of people praying there. If we could all take that atmosphere of peace and of prayer back to our lives, the world would be a much better place.

    God Bless

  3. Nick says:

    Pat,

    You should do a blog post on the Christians of the Middle East. It would be a great reminder, I think, of the Eastern Rites of the Church and might fan the flame of charity in Christian hearts to help their persecuted brothers out.

    Or, you should do a blog post on the link between the Eucharist and the Pope, that is, the oneness or unity of the Blessed Sacrament and of the Petrine office. It would be a good apologetics piece, methinks.

  4. Patrick Madrid says:

    Oh, no, Stephen. I disagree. Medjugorje is definitely a hot-button issue for many people, including you. If it were not a hot-button issue, you wouldn't be so tenacious in posting constant rebuttals and rejoinders to anything that I and others say here about Medjugorje. Your own activities here prove my point. I say something about Medjugorje and you respond to it. Like night follows day. That's not a criticism of you, it's just a statement of fact.

    I think you missed the point of my "tendentious, insipid, and just plain erroneous" remark. I was simply pointing out the fallacy in your comment that if you get peoples' "knickers in a knot" that proves that you are doing your job. My point was that provoking people does not mean that you are doing your job well. Being a journalist, which you claim to aspire to, does not consist in provoking people. The job of a journalist is, among other things, to report facts fairly and accurately. It may well be that some of the things you write are insipid and just plain erroneous — I don't know because I very rarely ever visit your website. I can say, though, that your reportage is definitely tendentious, though that is not always a bad thing, when it's handled skillfully.

    In any case, I stand by the message of my original post, above which all these comments fall: Relax, settle down, be at peace.

    There's no use in fretting and fuming over the fact that I and a relatively few others are skeptical about Medjugorje. The Catholic Church does not require any Catholic to believe in any approved apparition, much less an unapproved, alleged apparition like Medjugorje. You really don't need to spend so much time and energy trying to convince people that it's true. If it is true, we'll all find that out in God's own good time. If it's not true, that will also come out according to the timetable of Divine Providence.

    So, in the meantime, don't let skeptics like me, Diane, and Patrick Coffin rattle you or cause you to feel that you have to "do battle" with us. We're not your enemies! We are your brother and sister Catholics who love and sincerely care about you and your spiritual welfare, and I for one am hopefully confident that you care about ours.

    Let's keep everything in perspective and allow God to work His will in this matter. Until such time as He discloses to all of us exactly what is really happening at Medjugorje, you and I and everyone else are perfectly free to believe in it or to be skeptical about it.

  5. ministryvalues.com says:

    Patrick … we need to get past the idea of Medjugorje is a "hot button issue" .. It is a simply a Catholic/Christian story ..it is interesting and for the life of me i do not know what the Catholic press is so afraid of. Judge Scalia seems to have no problem mentioning Medjugorje ..why should the press

    Also you say " but let's not forget that it doesn't mean that one is doing his job well..Tendentious, insipid, or just plain erroneous reportage is also quite effective at provoking people. then you say "I'm not saying that you are necessarily guilty of any of those "journalistic" offenses"

    If you are going to criticize then please be more specific iut would really be helpful.Otherwise it is really just a gratuitous baseless charge and if I am not guilty of those errors than we should leave it that.

    Lastly to the idea that Medjugorje is a liberal//progressive .. two things

    1. I here this subtle charge now and then and it is something I am VERY interested in. It goes to the root of the Medjugorje controversy on one level. One of my suspicions is "Our Lady" does not speak about "Gay Marriage" and other hot button cultural war issues or encourage Catholics to vote "republican" I would love to hear more about this. I have said many times the genius of Medjugorje is the "heavenly" (for me anyway) lack of politics or an agenda ..it is my sanctuary..Simple messages/ no politics has managed to convert millions without a single. My suspicion the tag of "liberal" has emerged from the lack of agendas

    2. For those who think Medjugorje is "feel good" progressive and liberal please remember fasting is a large aspect to "movement" .. I have a great deal of trouble doing that, It is quite difficult and is a true "penance"

  6. Patrick Madrid says:

    "If people get their knickers in a knot then that means I am doing my job."

    That may be true, Stephen, but it let's not forget that it doesn't mean that one is doing his job well. Tendentious, insipid, or just plain erroneous reportage is also quite effective at provoking people. I'm not saying that you are necessarily guilty of any of those "journalistic" offenses, but it's worth remembering that just because one can write something that gets people riled up is no guarantee that what was written was particularly useful.

    P.S. I try to keep this advice in mind when I post stuff on my own blog, especially stuff on hot-button issues like Medjugorje.

  7. ministryvalues.com says:

    Davide ..I appreciate your point but I think it is important to understand that I run a news organization (at least that is what google calls me ..they have designated me as "A Google News Source" ) We try and generate a lot of original content …google requires that or you lose your status.. So I am out there trying to uncover the story.(and otheres) My goal has been to get at the root of the "skeptics" views as well as the "Believers"
    I find this story very interesting (Medjugorje) and so do a lot of other folks .. Looking at Patrick Madrid's blog you will see that this Medjugorje article has been ranked quite high for "Interest" another interesting point is that the fellas at "Creative Minority Report" claim they will talk about "EVERYTHING" except Medjugorje. Most of the Catholic press will not talk about it.. I do.. and I report about it. There is clearly something fascinating about this story .. If people get their knickers in a knot then that means I am doing my job..

  8. Davide says:

    Dear Ministryvalues,
    I hope you did not get the wrong impression of my post. I was not intending to put down supporters of Medjugorje, as I am one myself. I was trying to make the point that a large percentage of Medjugorje supporters are relatively new Catholics, since many of them converted because of Medjugorje. And so it is important to keep this in mind, in discussions such as these.

    Medjugorje is not the fruit of its followers. The message of Medjugorje should be examined on its own merit, apart from the behavior of some of those who support. As we know with any movement, there will always be extremists (also those who tend to be the most vocal). The traditionalists have theirs, the charismatics have theirs, etc. I am concerned that the name "Medjugorje" has been somewhat stigmatized in recent times as equivalent to a progressive/liberal movement. And in my opinion, it is precisely this sloppy scholarship–of allowing our opinions to be formed by these peripherals–that is to blame.

    I believe in discussions on Medjugorje, supporters need to learn to stick to the facts, if they want to be effective in showing others the truth of Medjugorje. There is an element of truth to Patrick's post; calm down indeed. Remember how meek and gentle Our Lady is in the messages? Should we not imitate Her example?

    I believe Dr. Mark Miravalle is a prime example of how a Medjugorje supporters should act. Present the facts on the Church's position. Present the norms of the Church in judging apparitions. Present all applicable evidence (e.g., the fruits, the message, the integrity of the seers, their obedience, etc.), history, context, etc. Be concise. And do not get sidetracked with inconsequentials. Everything else is peripheral, really.

  9. ministryvalues.com says:

    Nick here are some words from Judge Scalia .. from just the other day (warning nick he mentions Medjugorje)

    Although the sophisticated may deride them as simple-minded, committed Christians should have the courage to embrace their faith he said. "It isn’t irrational to accept the testimony of eyewitnesses to miracles" Scalia said.

    “What is irrational,” he said, “is to reject a priori, with no investigation, the possibility of miracles in general and of Jesus Christ’s resurrection in particular — which is, of course, precisely what the worldly wise do.”

    Scalia cited the 10-year-old case of a priest in the Washington archdiocese who was said to have the stigmata. Statues of Mary and the saints appeared to weep in his presence. Reporters for The Washington Post did a story and were unable to find an explanation for the strange phenomena.

    “Why wasn’t that church absolutely packed with nonbelievers,” Scalia asked, “seeking to determine if there might be something to this?”

    The answer was obvious, he said with disdain: “The wise do not investigate such silliness.”

    "Surely those who adhere to all or most of these traditional Christian beliefs are regarded in the educated circles that you and I travel in as, well, simple-minded," Scalia asserted. The Catholic justice cited a story in The Washington Post that described Christian fundamentalists as "poorly educated and easily led. The same attitude applies, of course, to traditional Catholics,"

    Scalia said, "who do such positively peasantlike things as saying the rosary, kneeling in adoration before the Eucharist, going on pilgrimages to Lourdes or Medjugorje and — worst of all — following indiscriminately, rather than in smorgasbord fashion, the teachings of the pope."

  10. ministryvalues.com says:

    Pedro Regis the Brazilian nut is well a nut is that devotional enough for you

    but thanks for the refferals

  11. Nick says:

    Stephan,

    You have an unhealthy devotion to apparitions. Not only do you post messages on your site said to be from alleged apparitions, but you do not caution readers about the nature of unapproved revelations.

    An example of the above is this article. (Warning to readers: Article is about a revelation which the Church has not yet judged to be worthy of belief (i.e., from Heaven) and which should not be believed in until it is worthy of belief)

    Patrick,

    I am posting this on your blog, with apologies, because I feel you deserve to know that Stephan has an unhealthy devotion, and so, as it happens with unhealthy devotion, emotions run high in the devotee and the devotee rarely, if ever, listens to the voice of reason. Not to say or imply that this is the very case with Stephan, but just a word of caution about how such people come into discussions.

  12. ministryvalues.com says:

    " zealous and emotional in defending Medjugorje"

    Speaking for myself (steve ryan) this charge of " zealously defending" Medjugorje misses my entire point completely.
    Just what are we/me "defending"?

    As I have said from the beginning I look to Medjugorje with great curiosity- i look for answers to a great mystery that I do not think anybody can dispute exists (hello Sheriff Coffin – you out there) and yes much of the "event" rings true to me and I do value the "messages" of Medjugorje.

    If speaking my mind and not being Patrick Madrid's potted plant is viewed as "zealous" well I guess than so be it.

    And that is the important point. The "Skeptics" want me to be a potted plant and obey the Bishop of Mostar – I do not find that position interesting nor viable given the actions by thousands of Bishops and priests and the enduring nature of the phenomenon.

    Sheriff Coffin – Question – you say Medjugorje is fantasy.. Cardinal Schonborn says much of Medjugorje rings true

    Please explain to me your qualification and insight why you "get it" so much better than the Archbishop of Vienna does. And please spare me the tedious business of Bishop of Mostar has spoken and that medjugorje has been ruled supercalifagilisticexpealodotious.

    The root of zealousness comes from defending the Bishop of Mostar. I am just looking for answers the skeptics are defending their beliefs with a rigid desire for medjugorje to just go away

  13. Davide says:

    Dear Patrick,
    I understand that you may take a lot of heat for your skepticism on Medjugorje. And I appreciate your advice to those to calm down. However, please also try to understand where they are coming from. For many of these people, they converted to Catholicism because of Medjugorje, so their faith is closely linked to the apparitions. This is not an excuse for them, just a note of context. For these people, who still may be new to Catholicism, they will predictably be very zealous and emotional in defending Medjugorje, even though many may not have the grounding yet to formulate coherent responses.

    I know you to be a well grounded Catholic who will not allow the (sometimes) immature faith of others to further polarize your own skepticism about Medjugorje. This would be a greater fault, if indeed true, because you are a well-respected apologist–one of the best there is–and may people value your opinion, and will follow your lead in all things. Your postings on Medjugorje do not affect just a "tiny handful of people"; your influence is much greater than even you may realize.

    .

  14. ministryvalues.com says:

    from steve ryan

    Disobediance –

    To Bishop Cauchon "You say that you are my judge, I don't know if you are [or not]; but take care not to judge wrongly, lest you place yourself in great danger; and [I] notify you of this, so that if our Lord punishes you for it, I will have done my duty in telling you." Joan of Arc.. …"Bishop, I die because of you!"

  15. ministryvalues.com says:

    Steve ryan here

    Hi nick you may not want to suggest the Catechism of the Catholic Church as a book of reference- the chief editor "Director" of that book is Cardinal Schonborn.

    Also to Dianne K. –I have spent some time on your site and I see a wonderful message – a message of deep love for your faith – a deep love for your Church – a reverence for our priests and Bishops and most of all a love for the sacraments – especially the Eucharist -Keep up the great work.

    With that said I want you to understand I was not there – where you are with the Faith – until a couple of years ago. I got there as they say – a got to Christ, Our Savior, through Mary- "To Christ through Mary" is a very real and Catholic thing. Our Church urges this is in Signum Magnum(the Great Sign)

    I have returned to the faith by way of Our Lady – first I discovered Guadalupe – then Fatima, then the Black Madonna – Our Lady of Czestochowa . Lech Walesa, always wore on his lapel a badge depicting Our Lady Czestochowa as he and John Paul II were defeating atheistic communism. The power of Our Lady seemed to come alive to me with these two historic figures and this was very important to me.

    All this naturally led me to explore further the mystery of Our Lady and then I found Medjugorje – and the simple messages of Peace, Prayer and Love spoke to me in a very Catholic way –

    I saw in Guadalupe,Loudres, Fatima that Our Lady loves us – our Savior loves us, All these revelations were to simple, uneducated people, For better or worse Medjugorje brought me back to the Catholic Faith and I understand the Eucharist in way i thought was not possible. You sent me a link about the Eucharist..Here is my link to you. it is Mass at Medjugorje with an powerful song/video ..I recommend you view –

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8adO0KnXFXs

  16. Nick says:

    "Ivan is simply repeating in his own way the adage that for those with faith nothing needs to be compelled and that no one can compel anyone to believe. How you got anything else from that is beyond me."

    It is a Christian doctrine that no private revelation is faith and that no private revelation can correct, improve, surpass, or complete faith.

    But I will not argue with you over something that any Catholic could plainly see with a properly formed sense of the faith. I have much better things to do, and so I will do them. I will leave you with the Catechism of the Catholic Church, wherein you can learn about private revelation, as well as the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, wherein you can learn about the supernatural discernment, i.e., the sense of faith.

  17. Patrick Madrid says:

    But Kris, what you don't seem to understand is that I have been completely sincere in my comments to you. I've been trying to point out something to you that you seem unwilling or unable to see. In fact, my original blog post really applies as much to you as to any other Medjugorje adherents.

    As for derision, well, I think you should examine your own conscience on that score. Much of what you've said here has been rather caustic. Again, I hope you will prayerfully re-read my original post and (Deo volente) take it to heart.

  18. kris says:

    Well, Patrick, that's called simply being serious in relationships, listening to others and being courteous to what is expected to not be just frivolous comments or responses from the others within the debate. And while being serious, one does not take lightly expressions from the other that may masquerade as sincere while holding an underlying derision of the other. It certainly is your blog and therefore characterized by such responses in kind given. That part you have responsiblity for and definitely own. That's the chance one takes if honest in owning such forums.

    And, Nick, I haven't a clue as to what you are attempting to communicate – esp. when you quote quote someone and then extrapolate to something that just does not follow from that quote. It almost hurts to see the angst it must involve to try and convolute the simple. Ivan is simply repeating in his own way the adage that for those with faith nothing needs to be compelled and that no one can compel anyone to believe. How you got anything else from that is beyond me.

  19. Nick says:

    I meant former two, not latter two. My bad.

  20. Patrick Madrid says:

    Well, Kris, seeing as how this is my blog and all, and seeing as how blogs are intended for people who own them to express their opinions, I find it curious that you should object to my expressing my opinions on my own blog. And while I don't necessarily think that my own opinions are worthy of note, one thing is true, and that is that you very definitely take note of my opinions. In fact, you apparently give them such importance that you feel the need to post non-stop rebuttals to them. If my opinions were worthless, then you wouldn't bother.

  21. Patrick Madrid says:

    Pilgrim, I know exactly what you said. And in response, I said "take," not "make." I trust the distinction I intended is clear.

  22. Nick says:

    Kris,

    Check this pro-M site, Medjugorje.Org, and this pro-M site, Medjugorje.Pro, for the two messages (May 6 and December 20) I posted earlier, as it confirms that the messages are not hoaxes. I recommend using Ctrl+F to find them.

    Here's another troubling message you might not have heard:

    THURSDAY, DECEMBER 31ST 1981
    Ivan: "How can one put priests, who do not believe in the apparitions, on the right track?"
    It is necessary to tell them that, from the very beginning, I have been conveying the message of God to the world. It is a great pity not to believe in it. Faith is a vital element, but one cannot compel a person to believe. Faith is the foundation from which everything flows.

    I found the above message on two websites: a pro-M site, Medjugorje.Pro, and an anti-M site, Medjugorje.Eu.

    In the above message the apparition calls her messages "faith". No private revelation is faith, because the Church teaches that "so-called 'private' revelations…do not belong…to the deposit of faith".

    Given the Church's teaching, it is either that the visionaries misunderstood the apparition, the message was not translated correctly, or the apparition is not Mary. I have yet to see evidence for the latter two, but would love to see it.

  23. kris says:

    Patrick Madrid said…
    Kris, when it comes to Medjugorje promoters having a change of heart, once they're willing to examine the evidence, my motto is "never say never." But in your case, I'll make an exception.

    October 26, 2010 4:31 PM

    And why is it that you consider your personal opinion so worthy of note? With all due respect to your being the king on your own blog, who really cares if you make an exception? Rather condescending remark indeed. I'm examining the evidence available in the ongoing history along with the Church. And within that openness to everything I have seen no reason to change "my heart" as you seem to need. And … why is it that those who simply go along with the Church's seemingly own openness to the question get labeled as "promoters"??? I've asked no one to go, nor have advertised it, etc., unless relating honest experience, as do others permitted to do so, is stretched into being considered "promoting" something.

    Wouldn't you feel even more limited in your own lack of experience here if you never ran into at least some who could present a more coherent and honest openness? Darkness on any subject due simply to personal unaquaintedness should be grateful for any additional light on that subject!!

  24. pilgrim says:

    Patrick… I said “make” not “take” :)

  25. Patrick Madrid says:

    No worries, Pilgrim. I don't take any of this personally. God bless you.

  26. pilgrim says:

    Request: Please, will supporters of both sides of the argument try and make their comments less personal? Remember Jesus dwells in each of us.

  27. Patrick Madrid says:

    Kris, when it comes to Medjugorje promoters having a change of heart, once they're willing to examine the evidence, my motto is "never say never." But in your case, I'll make an exception.

  28. kris says:

    Kris, show me an approved apparition where the apparition told the visionary(ies) to not comply with the legitimate Commission and to not be truthful with the faithful.

    From a fuller understanding and references beyond your (and another individual's) obviously limited and repetitive preferences of sources, I understand a more correct version from greater caring and research. You limit your acceptable contexts. I have no idea (and neither do you) what was given personally/privately to previous visionaries in the great history of the Church in this area. I doubt if anyone has any guarantee of just what full conversations went on between local authorities and various seers of the past. There obviously had to be a kind of non-compliance or misunderstandings though since so many visionaries were unfairly disparaged for not fulfilling (implying disobedience) what was desired by said authorities in many prior instances. There is a much greater measure of stated and implied "personal messages" given in all such history without similar publicity in comparison. I do know (as hopefully does yourself) though that there are various examples in history where the local authority is given undesired (and therefore unfulfilled) requests and undesired answers by the Blessed Mother to his basic, unbelieving curiosity … and … orders too for that matter. Historically authorities over seers have been admonished, by the Blessed Mother through the chosen visionary, for not complying strongly and quickly enough for her intended graces to be given.

    There is nothing so far that has the Church chastising the visionaries here for answering in the way they are assumed to do honestly – with unsophisticated preference to their promises made to the Virgin and their understanding of what their instructions from her require. Apparently they have honestly put questions, requested by others, to the Virgin and honestly gave the replies … whether understanding the repercussions of such (since there was fear accompanying some of the answers, esp. to authorities – such replies were doubted as well by later personal advocates) was fully understood or expected or not. Nope, no soundbite or knee jerk replies here.

  29. kris says:

    Patrick Madrid said…
    Kris, you're not yourself today. I noticed the improvement immediately.

    October 26, 2010 11:14 AM

    You appear to be the same – rigidly uncharitable to others with facts that happen to just be simply in disagreement with your opinions…and with an awful lot of forums to express same.

  30. Nick says:

    "October 26, 2010 12:40 PM…Donke"

    Wut

  31. Donke says:

    I meant the statement in bold, not question.

    I'm asking for the info because, as you said you have read other apparitions, so I am sure you can find apparitions which did what I stated in bold.

    Thanks again :)

  32. Nick says:

    Kris,

    Please answer my question from October 22, 2010 12:40 AM (you can use Ctrl+F to find it).

    Thanks! :)

  33. Patrick Madrid says:

    Kris, you're not yourself today. I noticed the improvement immediately.

  34. kris says:

    All of these Medjugorje visions can be innocently regarded in the same way as any other charismatic experience.

    How self anointing it must feel to step out in front of the Church and advise others to also do so.

    For them, a comparison between these visions and any other in Catholic History is of no import.

    Where have you been??? Better start over and read a bit….from the top. Hopefully there can be more than the Jehovah type witnessing here and get beyond the operable mandated scriptures! Cause there's a lot to learn about the full history in comparison.

    It is emotion, and not reason, that rules the argument.

    Apparently the Church doesn't agree with you – since scientific studies more than ever before (that is if you really meant what you said about "reason" ruling the debate) have been administered and still are being considered up until the present. Don't cha just hate all of those unuseful facts to your own self-limiting "argument"!!

    Yes, yesterday's gospel certainly does point to those Pharisee types here who self anoint above what the Church allows and attempt to limit the possible graces for not only others but unfortunately for themselves as well!!

  35. Nick says:

    I think today's readings are a good read for everyone on the issue of Medjugorje.

  36. Alfred says:

    Don't people realize that we have a Charismatic element in the Church where "anything goes"…and that any emotional feeling can be defended as authentic inspiration? All of these Medjugorje visions can be innocently regarded in the same way as any other charismatic experience. From what I see it's pretty much all the same, and the same type of charismatic Catholics are the main proponents of the visions. For them, a comparison between these visions and any other in Catholic History is of no import. It is emotion, and not reason, that rules the argument.

  37. pilgrim says:

    Thou shalt know him when he comes
    Not by any din of drums
    Nor by the vantage of his airs
    Nor by anything he wears
    Neither by his crown
    Nor his gown
    For his presence known shall be
    by the holy harmony
    that his coming makes in thee.

    anon 15 century author

  38. kris says:

    It is and remains an UNAPPROVED apparition.

    And?????

    A little spirit of obedience goes a long way, despite one's deeply felt subjective attachments, no?

    So why the personal (subjective) struggle to try and subvert what the Vatican itself currently permits to the now millions of the world?? You just might get trampled by all the rest of the faithful who adhere to it by walking in that other direction!!

    Wouldn't it be great if all the lecturers here (sages!) began in humility to first be the ones to take their own advice so freely given to others!!

    Why were *none* of Bishop Zanic's directives ever revoked by any lawful ecclesiastical authority above him?

    I would say that actions (unprecedented btw) by just that higher ecclesiastical authority spoke and continue to speak volumns – at least to those who can hear and see in the present moment. And so those recorded directives to the many higher ecclesiasts by the highest himself in his personal meetings with them blessedly sent them on their way to just this place of obvious graces. The official "directives" (other than the earliest "official" Communist ones)have always been positive by those higher than the local ones who can't seem to make up their minds in the various historical opinions given. And, against your personal desires (subjective obviously) the current permitted directive is "onward"! You don't want to follow – no problem. Others have every permission to currently do so. Mustn't place one's self higher than Mother Church!

    If you want to subject yourself to "opinions" on this subject by those who don't personally like or believe in even approved revelations you have only yourself to blame for your own limitations then on the full understanding of this area within the full deposit of our Faith!

    Others, by the millions again, apparently are much more open to the Spirit of such possible revelation – and grace – than yourself. No reason for sour grapes since they are easily obtainable!

  39. steve says:

    "I have never understood the hectoring, thin-skinned, defensiveness I see on display whenever the lightest whiff of skepticism is directed toward Medjugorje."

    The reason you don' understand Patrick Coffin is that the charge of "hectoring, thin-skinned, defensiveness" does not exist – Particularly in this nutty conversation. Madrid's post is about me and my article and now you have piped in with charges of "hectoring" yet my article has still not been posted or even linked to. Did you even read my article?

    Sheriff Coffin – you shoot first and ask questions later. and no I am not going to get out of Dodge just yet.

  40. Wade St. Onge says:

    Since I have "officially retired" from the Medjugorje debate, I am just kicking back and enjoying these exchanges. Very entertaining!

  41. Wade St. Onge says:

    Patrick, weren't you the one who told me you didn't think this gentleman was taking us for a ride when I suggested that in your last Medjugorje post? Weren't you the one who told me I was being uncharitable for assuming his motives were not pure? And now this …

  42. Patrick Coffin says:

    Is there any wonder that Bishop Zanic, may he rest in peace, compared the fanaticism of many in the Medjugore Movement, with the fanaticism of Jim Jones followers? An utterly blunt assessment, I'd have to agree. But why didn't it earn a peep of a rebuke from the Holy See? (His Eminence Schonborn koff koff). Why were *none* of Bishop Zanic's directives ever revoked by any lawful ecclesiastical authority above him?

    And strange that the very Marian John Paul II would select Bishop Ratko Peric as Zanic's successor if he (JPII) thought Medjugorje to be "the spiritual heart of the world" or some such.

    Stranger still — if the Blessed Mother is really appearing after almost 40,000 messages lasting over a generation — that the 1991 Zadar Declaration, the 1998 statement from the CDF, and now three national Episcopal Commissions (and counting) have all stated unambiguously, "Non constat de supernaturalitate."

    For all the devotees of the Gospa who came to faith as a result of the events there, I give thanks to God. Conversions and vocations happen when people pray, the gospel in preached, and the sacraments are administered. But good fruits alone are not sufficient to accept Medjugorje. There were similar good fruits at Necedah and Bayside as well, both of which (condemned apparitions) have devotees to this day.

    Even if the 30 years of official magisterial assessment of Medjugorje were to be overturned by the Ruini Commission, no Catholic would be yet obliged to be that the events in Medjugorje.
    I have never understood the hectoring, thin-skinned, defensiveness I see on display whenever the lightest whiff of skepticism is directed toward Medjugorje.

    It is and remains an UNAPPROVED apparition. A little spirit of obedience goes a long way, despite one's deeply felt subjective attachments, no?

    Please. Let. It. Go.

  43. Nick says:

    "Medjugorje – It is the spiritual heart of the world"

    That sounds like what other followers used to say on NewAdvent back when you could comment on its articles:

    "The Church will become the Medjugorje Church."

    "Medjugorje is above judgment."

    "I don't care what the Church says, I know it is true!"

    May God cool fanatic hearts with the Holy Spirit.

  44. Arch Hall B& B says:

    steve ryan here

    I agree wow that's just wow (for the record i did not make up the words I have a good source –
    "The Pope (JPII) concentrated his thoughts and said, "Medjugorje, Medjugorje, it`s the spiritual heart of the world

    http://www.medjugorje.ws/en/articles/pope-john-paul-ii-medjugorje/

    But for all you I am sure The Pope is wrong or the conspirator made up the words

  45. Chris - The Eternal Server says:

    Medjugorje is the spiritual heart of the world? Wow…thats just…wow.

  46. M. Bedded says:

    "…nothing in this world has brought people back to Christ like Medjugorje – It is the spiritual heart of the world."

    wow.

  47. Arch Hall B& B says:

    steve here

    I was absolutely certain somebody would say that which of course misses my entire point. Our Lady of Medjugorje is the remedy to bring people back to the Eucharist. It is what Medjugorje is all about no matter what you think .. Anybody who understands Medjugorje understands that it is about a return to prayer and the Sacraments. And despite what the doubteres think nothing in this world has brought people back to Christ like Medjugorje – It is the spiritual heart of the world.

  48. Nick says:

    They even repeat stupid facts like, in this case, the local bishop still being the authority over the cause/apparition/decision itself…

    A Bishop being a Bishop is Catholic doctrine, not a stupid fact. If you don't want to be reminded of that, than start remembering it.

    …when that shows they are not in obedience themselves to what the Church is permitting the faithful nor the current facts of real authority ordered by the Church.

    The visionaries disobeyed the Bishop in 1982, twice. First by not obeying the Commission, second by concealing objective information from the faithful regarding the apparitions. Here are the messages (source):

    THURSDAY, MAY 6TH 1982
    [Visionaries] May we write on a piece of paper, the date of the great sign, describe it, seal it, and put it in the archives? (as requested by the commission).
    [Gospa] No! I have entrusted that only to you. You will unveil it when I will tell you. Many persons will not believe you, I know, and you will suffer very much for it. But you will endure everything, and you will finally be the happiest.

    MONDAY, DECEMBER 20TH 1982
    With respect to the same article (Dec. 18, 1982)*, the visionaries ask: Is it necessary to give the faithful of Mostar objective information concerning the case in Hercegovina?
    [Gospa] No!

    * The article of the Bishop of Mostar in the journal, "Vijesnik," on the events of Medjugorje

    Kris, show me an approved apparition where the apparition told the visionary(ies) to not comply with the legitimate Commission and to not be truthful with the faithful.

  49. Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS says:

    Steve Ryan says: If Our Lady is indeed here offering messages to the world (that speak to me deeply) then you tell me what on earth could by bigger than that.

    This, Steve.

  50. Cavaliere says:

    And, from the above comment, another projection – "virulent" treatment?? Here? Where? As I mentioned before all those exaggerated attributed descriptions here come not from any Medjugorje fans.

    Seriously?

  51. Arch Hall B& B says:

    steve ryan here

    Kris..i agree with Patrick's point ( I thank you for making my point far more pointedly than I was able to) accept without his sarcasm..

    i think you have a great feel for all of this..keep up your great efforts you bring a lot clarity and keen insight to many of these issues.

    God bless ..

  52. Louis Bélanger says:

    Dear Patrick,

    You have been kinder to me than Stephen Ryan and I am grateful to you for your “act of chivalry”, as “Cavaliere” would say…

    I thank you also for the question you asked Stephen: “Why is Medjugorje such a big deal to you?” I tried to answer it for myself, when I published “The Hidden Side of Medjugorje”, a critical approach of that case that has been an ordeal for my Franciscan friend, the late Father Ivo Sivric, and myself. In the Prologue to the English edition, I put in exergue Paul’s appeal:

    “From now on, no more lying; that each one speak the truth to his neighbor; aren't we members of one another?” Ephesians, 4, 25.

    That appeal is Medjupedia’s motto to which I try to be faithful. The reference to the Communion of Saints helps us to defuse the tensions between Christian interlocutors, especially in relation to the “debate” on Medjugorje. Aren’t we an “organic whole which embraces in the bonds of charity”?

    As members of Communio Sanctorum, the believers in and the critics of Medjugorje are invited to give their opinion on the case, with benevolence and rigour, within the scope of the Sentiment of the Faithful, in sharing a co-responsibility of discernment with the competent "Teaching Authority".

    If we take ourselves too seriously, let’s cool down as if we were two different teams of the same League, the Communion of Saints, playing a game and observing its rules — in our context, the 1978 Norms.

    Yes to fair game and good pass, no to foul play and cross-check, the latter permitted only for documentary sources…

    That is my “big deal”.

    God Bless,

    Louis

  53. Patrick Madrid says:

    Ah, Kris. Sincerely, I thank you for making my point far more pointedly than I was able to. God bless you.

  54. kris says:

    Oh, and the other part of your question to us:

    Or what about the innumerable people out there who are skeptical about (or even outright deny and attack) the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist and the Catholic Church's Marian teachings (e.g., Our Lady's Immaculate Conception, perpetual virginity, etc.). Do you spend this much time and energy trying to refute them?

    I also happen to run the Eucharistic Adoration at a rather progressive minded parish because I feel that without it the parish will collapse. It gets minimal backing by pastor or progressive nun administrator. I fight against the centering of the "faith" there around "social justice" philosophy over a deepening parish faith in God present in the Eucharist. And those who established that Adoration with me in such a parish had undergone their own deepening realization of such through Medjugorje experience as well as the other grassroots Marian groups that the Spirit rose up in the same period of necessary awakening. It's always a question of following the Spirit's nudges. Prudence is one thing, but fear ought to be fought against.

  55. kris says:

    Kris, Steve, allow me to ask you a sincere question that has been on my mind for awhile now: What is it about Medjugorje that drives you to such lengths of activity and intensity?

    A few rebuttals on your blog somehow equals some measure by yourself of some kind of huge activity on my part? I think, on any subject that I know something about, it is a gut feeling of hypocrisy and dishonest approach that initiates a need in myself to answer with at least as strong a reply as the original unjust instigation. Do I answer as well to, say, Fatima questions with similar corrections in fact for incorrect notions? – well, I did so here earlier in requesting the person to at least read what Sr. Lucia has stated herself for the correct history. I offered comparable histories of other private revelations that usually go conveniently unmentioned that have had very similar attacks – even after approval – with continued and unrepented attacks of seers involved – even by bishops. Most of the time these days I find personal pride or ego getting in the way of those who have set up a certain reputation of being "orthodox" or "by the book"; fear of personal embarrassment in the eyes of their compadres of that same reputation, pride of position, a certain type of "club", that prevents them, even after being corrected with further information, from ever being swayed to admit they need to at least experience those they so blatantly speak against before passing their obvious judgments against the persons or what they have been chosen to represent. They even repeat stupid facts like, in this case, the local bishop still being the authority over the cause/apparition/decision itself when that shows they are not in obedience themselves to what the Church is permitting the faithful nor the current facts of real authority ordered by the Church.

    With regard to private revelations, people apparently are not aware that many have had approval from one local authority only to have that approval dismissed by some later local authority who himself is swayed by personalities without even the basic study required. How many faux "commissions" (or none at all for that matter) have been disobediently established to prove personal biases of the local authority? That is why private revelation has been allowed to never be written in stone – like when the simple man simply stated the fact that he was blind and now he could suddenly see. The others witnessed it, knew the history of the man, and yet would still not admit the good fruit – they had to find some way to attribute it to evil. I've read the same in this case over and over re: how good fruits should not be stated as a measure for judgment … only in this case. It's scriptural but no, not in this case, for some reason – again, of stubbornness, another word for pride.

    Also, why go on pilgrimage to places like Medjugorje or even approved sites when Mary or Jesus can just speak to your heart – esp. if you don't wish to spend the money, etc.? Well, because the Church teaches us as well that we may obtain graces from such pilgrimages – helps that we are not even aware of prior to such trips for such efforts. And each has its own special heavenly reason through the Holy Spirit for being so that reason will be more greatly understood from personal experience. To try to sway otherwise is again not allowing for the full deposit of Faith within our wonderful Mother Church. It kinda even sounds like the "sour grapes" approach.

    And, from the above comment, another projection – "virulent" treatment?? Here? Where? As I mentioned before all those exaggerated attributed descriptions here come not from any Medjugorje fans. You might wish to ask the seers about such treatment…esp. in "christian" blogs! The ad hominem attacks are from the doubting factions indeed. It's only private revelation … so chill out … relax … settle down … be at peace!!!!!

  56. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Steve ryan says

    Patrick.. I do appreciate you hanging in there with the comments so let me know and maybe we can revisit this another time. but i will answer your question about "big deal" I began my return to the Catholic Church by reading up on Pope John Paul II a hugely Marian Pope. Then I discovered Medjugorje. If Our Lady is indeed here offering messages to the world (that speak to me deeply) then you tell me what on earth could by bigger than that. I see the Church in trouble I see Medjugorje offering a remarkable renewal of faith. Quite frankly I for the life of me do not understand why this is not a bigger deal in America.. I suspect it will be at some point.

  57. Cavaliere says:

    Personally I think he sees the fruits of medjugorje as the only place on Earth where there is a genuine spiritual renewal.

    Really? I wonder if he has ever been to Lourdes. Also Cardinal Schonborn has allowed some of the craziest novelties to take place in his Diocese so his actions are definitely a mixed bag.

    Even with approved apparitions the Church does not require acceptance of the apparition as an article of Faith. Should the Church one day approve Medjugorje the same will hold true. However based upon the reactions of its supporters I expect we would not be allowed such a courtesy but instead be persecuted for not accepting. I would never think to treat doubters of Fatima, Lourdes, Knock, Akita with the same virulence as we are treated by the supporters of Medugorje.

  58. Patrick Madrid says:

    Okay, Steve. Let me ask the question a somewhat different way. You say, "For the record, this is a big deal to me."

    My question: Why is Medjugorje such a big deal to you? Do you expend this much time and energy trying to refute and silence those who doubt or deny the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist or the Immaculate Conception? If not, why not? Why are you so focused on Medjugorje?

    Also, I'm not sure what you mean about my "acolyte." If you're referring to Mr. Symonds, I have never met him and do not know him outside of what he has posted here.

    Finally, please recall that this blog post of mine was simply an oblique response to your original challenge to Medjugorje skeptics.

    For as long as you wish to continue posting comments here, I will do my best to respond to your comments. That's only proper for a good blog host, wouldn't you agree? Please recall that you came here first and and started posting comments. I did not make you do that.

    And finally, I wholeheartedly agree with you that, according to God's providence and timing, Our Lady's Immaculate Heart will indeed triumph. I have a hunch that you and I will both live to see how that plays out with regard to the alleged apparitions of Medjugorje, Deo volente.

  59. jprincipe2 says:

    I am going to make a couple of simple statements. I am not quite as knowledgeable and skillful at debate.
    First, I want to thank Mr. Madrid and the good deacon for educating me. Really I appreciate it.
    My husband and I are cradle Catholics. We both had fallen away from the Catholic church and then attende protestant churches. We both met while we were Protestant.
    We were led astray by listening to protestant pastors and other protestant people that were very insistant that their beliefs were the only ones. WE both could have used you two gentlemen to open our eyes.
    We suffered some abuse and were treated like second class citizens just because of our Catholic faith.
    We came home to the Catholic church. We both had a renewal and awakening of our faith. We watched EWTN and learned about the Church. And we feel that Mary is with us. She is with us even in our modest home. And we regularly go to Mass and to confession and we receive the Eucharist and go to adoration. And we never visited Medjuorguouge. And even if we could afford it. Why travel and spend all that money when Mary can speak right to your heart. Like she did for me and my husband. As I prayed and wanted to come home to the Catholic church . I bought an image of her and started to pray and say the Rosary. She became real to me in my faith. And we thought about the truths of the Catholic church. And if we would just stop and think. Then we would realize what makes sense. The doctrine of the Catholic church just makes sense compared to other doctrines.
    Trust the Catholic church.
    Sorry if this is too long. God bless.

  60. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Steve ryan here

    Patrick says "What is it about Medjugorje that drives you to such lengths of activity and intensity?"

    Earth to Patrick – You initiated this conversation in the first place. This is not my deal (read the tile of your post) I had no intention of getting into this but then your acolyte drew me in with his strange innuendo against me.. Your accusation that I am into this makes no sense since this is your blog and your article about me. You are the one that keeps this going for Pete's sake. What do you expect from me when you lob the bomb in the first place. You are again twisting yourself into a knot with your bizarre logic. I really find a lot of problems with your thinking and your point of view by putting this on me.

    For the record this is a big deal to me and from the looks of it it is a big deal to Cardinal Schonborn. A close friend of the Pope thinks the Virgin Mary is here on earth with messages for the world – and millions agree that’s a big deal.
    Lastly why do I spend so much time on this .. many reason one of course because I love our faith but another reason is I am so disillusioned with the endless "cultural wars Catholics" I feel I have something to say. We will see about that.. but just like you you feel you have something to say. I just don;t want to talk/write about gay marriage, moslems, Nancy pelosi, and all the other hot button Catholic issues 24/7 . I believe Our Lady's heart will triumph maybe not in my lifetime but I will look there to strengthen my faith.

  61. PabloSerna says:

    For what its worth, my experience from a trip taken in 1995…

    First, I'll start off by saying that I have no opinion on the visionaries, as I only saw them on one occasion and it was from afar. We met at one of the houses and they came out and began relating some things they had seen. My impression was that they were under a lot of demand from the pilgrims that made the trek as we had from across the world.

    My own experience was more important for me personally as I did climb the mountain to the top to see the cross, attend a mass with a friend (priest from my parish) and pray the rosary with complete strangers from around the world! We prayed into the night and spoke about God and his presence in our lives. As day broke, the sun was coming up and many of us witnessed a dancing sun, which appeared to me as more of a throbbing sun that pulsated with what appeared to be a Eucharistic Host in the middle. Then I saw a small 'drop of sun' fall to the earth and toward the church of St. James below. We began to talk to one another about what we each were seeing; some described 'golden halos' around the people. others described 'golden beads' around where we were sitting. It was the most unexplained 5 or 10 minutes of my life, needless to say. Father told us that what we experienced was a personal revelation and meant for our own spiritual growth.

    The second part of our trip was to Rome and Assisi, Italy. I can honestly tell you that I felt the power of God more there than I have ever felt anywhere in my life. It must be the history of the place and the sheer number of pilgrims. We visited many churches and were able to see the Basilica of St. Francis before the destruction of the murals (I am not sure if they have since been restored) but they were magnificent.

    In all, I can say they there IS something going on at Medjugorje. The people were very nice, but the merchants and trinkets can be overwhelming. I deliberately stayed away from those areas and instead sought out opportunities to pray, reflect and encounter what was happening there for myself. I did not go to see the visionaries, except for that one time I accompanied the rest of the tour group from Texas and it was a little odd to see so many people at this house hanging on every word.. it may just be me. That said, I could feel the power of God (through Mary no doubt) in the area during the tumultuous times of a civil war (that was still going on at the time!). I think the jury will be out for a long time, maybe our lifetime, maybe a our kids?

    The most remarkable moment for me was being present at a mass offered by our priest. He said mass in our room, just he and I.. and Jesus (of course)!

  62. Carmen says:

    If the Church condemns Medjugorje as a false apparition, do you think there would be a schism in the Church? Or, do you think Medjugorje followers would abandon their belief and adhere to the decision made by the Pope and the Bishops? Where could this all lead to? Just something to think about…

  63. Patrick Madrid says:

    Kris, Steve, allow me to ask you a sincere question that has been on my mind for awhile now: What is it about Medjugorje that drives you to such lengths of activity and intensity?

    I'm curious to know: Do you also spend this much time and energy endlessly arguing with and seeking to refute and silence those who doubt the authenticity of, say, the Third Secret of Fatima? There are many of them out there, you know, and they are quite vocal in their skepticism. Or what about the innumerable people out there who are skeptical about (or even outright deny and attack) the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist and the Catholic Church's Marian teachings (e.g., Our Lady's Immaculate Conception, perpetual virginity, etc.). Do you spend this much time and energy trying to refute them?

    If not, why not? Surely you would agree with me that it is a far, far worse thing for someone to deny a defined dogma of the Faith than it is to be skeptical about an unapproved, alleged Marian apparition. So, why do you devote such an expenditure of time and emotional energy to defending — at all costs, it seems — an unapproved apparition and, curiously, you spend no time whatsoever defending truths of the Faith which some people doubt or reject?

    Why? Why not?

    As others have pointed out so helpfully here, the Catholic Church does not oblige anyone to put faith in any *approved* private revelation, much less unapproved, alleged ones. So, again, what is it about Medjugorje that engenders this, this . . . . mania of defensiveness and outrage toward those who, like me, simply do not find the evidence for Medjugorje being an authentic apparition to be worthy of our confidence and support?

    Why?

  64. Nick says:

    My response to Steve (too long to post):
    Response to "Medjugorje – Skeptics turn up empty in search for Wizard"

    Steve, I have also e-mailed to you. :)

  65. Mari says:

    Funny you should mention this. This topic has appeared ( get it?) in our parish recently. See this link to explanation on public and private revelations and how to regard them. http://www.ewtn.com/expert/answers/apparitions.htm
    I found it helpful and reassuring.

  66. Bigdady says:

    Boy!!!! No wonder the other look at us as if we are from another planet. WE can respect other opinion by accepting the fact that it will take time to approve the apparition and we all can wait. All I can say is no wonder we are losing our fellow Catholics to a non denomination Christians and Islam is gaining ground in our backyard. Please wake up and put your intelligent knowledge to work toward the use of bringing our follow Catholics to the Church of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Let us work together.

  67. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Deacon Kandra Confusing the faithful?

    The faithful are beaten like baby seals everyday here in the United Stated by a world increasingly aggressive towards the Catholic Church. And it seems we are powerless to do anything about it. Suddenly Schonborn, who speaks of "Christian roots dying in Europe" invites seers of the Virgin Mary to his Church searching for a remedy. He sees Millions of people who have turned to medjugorje to renew their faith in a deep and sustaining way. What do I get from my priest on Sunday morning – "Don't forget to vote republican" The renewal of the Catholic Faith will not be found in the voting booth. As Our Lady said at Fatima "In the end my heart will triump"

  68. kris says:

    I don't know why Steve and others who feel like he does don't take Archbishop Sartain's warning into account (and take it to heart!).

    Most likely because he doesn't have to or has weighed the, oh, so many other voices of approval of much greater particular acquaintance … up to the minute … and found it wanting. And … of course, because, as you yourself were adamant about – it's just another opinion, not greater or lesser than others (even though you seem to give it greater weight on your own side!). "We get too soon old and too late smart"!

  69. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Steve ryan says

    the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II in 1981 that is what i am talking about.

    By the way I do believe in miracles and apparitions .This is a big part of ministryvalues.com The defining aspect to Our Savior's ministry aside from the resurrection were his miraculous works.

    John Paul II one said "Today we have lost our sense of the supernatural"
    Ministryvalues.com sees this as a troubling symptom of the lack of health in the Catholic Faith. Yes I believe in the after life, heaven, miracles, apparitions of Our Lady this is all part of the Catholic Faith. Pope John Paul II implored us to find Christ through Mary yet Catholic's I meet at my sons Catholic school have all that tucked away in the attic. Relics of a quaint past.Bullied into submission by a secular world. Religious conversations either end up talking about dead Saints or Nancy Pelosi and Obama. Ministryvalues.com looks to the divine mysteries of the supernatural with a fearless joy

  70. kris says:

    alarming insecurity; rage; chastise anyone who has doubts; ballistic; attacking; unsettled; anxious; worried;turmoil; defensiveness

    Terms all used by the fear mongering doubter set here – no one else… although they would like to attribute, falsely, same to others. These are terms born out of your minds … not used here by any of those who represent themselves, not by slandering others, but by actual relating of factual history. Remember, the "chastising" began by he who invented the headline currently in use! The lecture here was to those reacting with emotion … like those using such descriptions per chance???!!

    How about unbridled feelings that go to slandering Catholic Christian brothers and sisters completely unknown, obviously recognized in the remark itself, by the accuser. shame on this:

    I simply don't see how the strange and disquieting circus atmosphere surrounding the alleged Medjugorje apparitions and the alleged seers, who jet-set around the world collecting handsome speaking fees for their appearances, in any way resembles the quiet, humble, mortified piety which has been so evident in the authentic apparitions (and seers) of Our Lady at places such as Fatima, Lourdes, Akita, Guadalupe, and Rue de Bac.

    Jet setters? Really? You may have a large family but I doubt you suffer the everyday, now for some 30 and more years, humble, patient service of the huge extended family of strangers allowed within your own home – without "circus" as imagined only by yourself. And the invites by those extended family members to come and speak the messages within their own neighborhoods – due to just that love and patience having been extended to them – such invites too numerable to even begin to answer. So to even comply with a few invitations out of love while having to leave one's own family, simple life, and convenient surroundings is something, again, you have no experience with yet will pretend to know the similarities of basic inconveniences involved.

    And why stop with only those chosen, select approved private revelations for convenient examples … why not include others like La Salette or the others who've suffered persecution by one bishop after some former one accepted, or the repetitive disappointment and disapproval by the Blessed Virgin in those who slowed down and lessened the much needed graces involved in such as the Green Scapular – also out of Rue de Bac originally! Suppose you didn't consider that when mentioning "Rue de Bac" for own purposes. Of course if you lived during the turmoil, "circus", in those times before much later approvals you'd be doing, no doubt, the same to them then as you do here today. How safe it is today to use the aftermath rather than the entire history of such spots. Ahh… the mystery involved when human nature is always part of the conveying by prophets in their assignments (most initially unwillingly) from heaven. The proof, btw, is usually in just such persecution – even by the recognized Catholic teachers of blog sponsorship!

  71. Patrick Madrid says:

    Nicely put, Deacon Greg. You hit the nail on the head. This is related to Archbishop Sartain's warning about promoting unapproved apparitions:
    http://patrickmadrid.blogspot.com/2010/09/bishops-warns-against-promotion-of.html

    I don't know why Steve and others who feel like he does don't take Archbishop Sartain's warning into account (and take it to heart!).

  72. M. Bedded says:

    How can someone make an attempt on the life of the "Holy See?"

  73. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    Steve…

    Re: the good Cardinal.

    He may have been well-intentioned, but he violated the Church's own guidelines about Medjugorje:

    As EWTN noted on its website: "From the statements given to date by ecclesiastical authorities it is clear that no one holding an office in the Church (bishop, pastor, rector, chaplain or other) may by virtue of that office lend official sanction to activities which tend to assert the supernaturality of Medjugorje, that is, to contradict the decisions made by competent local authority."

    I can't see into the Cardinal's heart to discern his motives. But he's clearly going against the wishes of the local bishop — and confusing the faithful in the process.

    Deacon Greg

  74. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Hi Steve ryan here

    First "Rage"? I think i said if Medjugorje is proved false I want to meet the inventors and give them a hug.

    Second ,,But so how does Fatima tie into Medjugorje? this is actually something I know a little bit about

    · Our Lady of Medjugorje said to the visionaries in November 1981 six months after the attempt on the Holy See’s life “Russia will come to glorify God the most, the West has made civilization progress, but act as if they are their own creator”

    R Russia is the only country “Our Lady” has ever mentioned specifically. Keep in mind Russia is the only country the Blessed Mother mentioned at Fatima and at Medjugorje. This is a hugely significant point that gets very little attention.

    · In 1984 Bishop Paul Maria Hnilica, S.J. reported famously that Pope John Paul II told him that Medjugorie is the “continuation of Fatima."

    Our Lady of Medjugorje said to a visionary in 1991 six years after the Pope mentioned Medjugorje’s connection to Fatima – “I call all of you, dear children to pray and fast still more firmly. I invite you to realize through the secrets I began in Fatima may be fulfilled. I call you, dear children, to grasp the importance of my coming and the seriousness of the situation.”

    A question and answer session given by Mirjana, one of the Medjugorje Visionaries in the Oasis of Peace on 3rd October 2009, she was asked the question "Has Our Lady said anything about other apparitions?" Her answer: "Only about Fatima. Our Lady said “What I have started in Fatima I will finish in Medjugorje. My heart will triumph”. I cannot go into details. That’s the only apparition she mentioned aside from Medjugorje. "

  75. DeusCaritasEst says:

    I do not believe in Medjugorge. I will not go to hell for this fact, nor does His Church oblige me to believe in any apparition. I am only obliged to the will of God, and the same is true for all of us.

    If you believe in Medjugorge, fine. But what if the Church pronounces a final condemnation on it? Will you abandon the Bride for what could amount to magic tricks and soothsayers? I think many would. What it comes down to is does your faith depend on miracles and visions or on the unseen Word and His Church?

  76. Ann says:

    One thing that I find very off-putting about those who believe in the "alleged" apparitions at Medjugorge, is their rage when anyone doubts that Our Lady has been appearing there. Many have gone there, and multiple times, and seen the rosaries turn to gold, the sun spinning, etc. etc. I wish I still had a book I read decades ago about signs of false apparitions, such as spinning sun, etc. Now, have you ever told anyone you didn't believe in Fatima, or Lourdes, and have them go ballistic? I think not. We know we are free to believe in private apparitions! But the Medjugorge followers are a group that have to rigorously not only defend, but chastise anyone who has doubts. Very strange…we have not followed through with Our Lady's requests at Fatima, particularly the Five First Saturday devotions. When her requests at Fatima are fulfilled, we will have peace as she promised.

  77. Cló Mhuire says:

    There seems to be an alarming insecurity growing in some people who refuse to accept Medjugorje may well be a great deception. At the end of the day, where do we find God and Our Lady – in the sacraments of the Church and rosary, or running to a few alleged 'seers' who seem to be under the umbrella of Fr. Jozo and his colleagues rather than the Bishops of the Church. We have many friends of the Lord and we have wolves in sheep's clothing. Who protects who? Let each person discern according to their interior relationship with Christ.

  78. kris says:

    I just believe that if Medjugorje were a real apparition of Mary why Mary of Medjugorje would not be saying things like, why haven't you done yet what I've asked when I appeared to you at Fatima. Or has the Church officially consecrated Russia yet and I missed it. It just seems to me an apparition of Mary would not come and contradict her previous appearing or not make mention of not fulfilling actions asked for in a previous appearing. Doesn't make sense.

    With no disrespect intended … and you are far from being a lone ranger in this … but you are obviously not fully acquainted with all of the messages. Just such admonitions that you cite are given – people come, hear the messages but do not put them into practice. And people desire more messages (to their own preferences by the way) but refuse to hear and listen to and accept them in their hearts for real change and conversion. And, just as you say, Fatima was not complied with, and, while the time is still available and yet even later in the day, heaven still gives us hope in a further continuation of what began at Fatima. JPII agreed.

    Re: the consecration, you should read the reply of Sr. Lucia given to those officially sent to interview her on the subject. Everything is written in her own words in her various biographies/diaries/etc.

    And, Patrick, I don't believe that you are quite up to snuff on all of the details of those back up references you site – you might wish to do a little more research on some changes re: Akita for instance … that if the same were taking place re: Medj. you'd be all over them!!! I know there are those "cafeteria Catholics", but "cafeteria private revelation followers??"!!

  79. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Steve ryan here

    Deacon Kandra … I was hoping to hear from "some dude named Akin" :)

    One point (we have gone over this one before) but as a member of the Clergy can you give us an explanation of Cardinal Schonborn's role with respect to Medjugorje. Should we not give this man respect and try to fully understand his motivations. Why is he doing what he is doing..Why is he inviting Visionaires of the Virgin Mary into his Chruch. Is there something he knows that we don't know. In my opinion his involvement is a much bigger thing than I think people understand.. This man is not some naive person that is being duped. He has a motivation. Personally I think he sees the fruits of medjugorje as the only place on Earth where there is a genuine spiritual renewal – The "spiritual lung of the world" if you will. I think he is afraid of the loss of faith he sees everywhere (i was present at a talk he gave on this subject) I have said this before .. Medjugorje is the Church's or at least Schonborn's "Hail Mary Pass"

  80. Rouxfus says:

    Some sage advice to the participants on this thread from The Imitation of Christ:

    "HAPPY is he to whom truth manifests itself, not in signs and words that fade, but as it actually is. Our opinions, our senses often deceive us and we discern very little. What good is much discussion of involved and obscure matters when our ignorance of them will not be held against us on Judgment Day? Neglect of things which are profitable and necessary and undue concern with those which are irrelevant and harmful, are great folly." [I. 1.]

    "WHEN a man desires a thing too much, he at once becomes ill at ease. A proud and avaricious man never rests, whereas he who is poor and humble of heart lives in a world of peace." [I. 6]

    "IT IS good for us to have trials and troubles at times, for they often remind us that we are on probation and ought not to hope in any worldly thing. It is good for us sometimes to suffer contradiction, to be misjudged by men even though we do well and mean well. These things help us to be humble and shield us from vainglory. When to all outward appearances men give us no credit, when they do not think well of us, then we are more inclined to seek God Who sees our hearts. Therefore, a man ought to root himself so firmly in God that he will not need the consolations of men." [I. 12]

    "UNTIL God ordains otherwise, a man ought to bear patiently whatever he cannot correct in himself and in others. Consider it better thus — perhaps to try your patience and to test you, for without such patience and trial your merits are of little account. Nevertheless, under such difficulties you should pray that God will consent to help you bear them calmly. If, after being admonished once or twice, a person does not amend, do not argue with him but commit the whole matter to God that His will and honor may be furthered in all His servants, for God knows well how to turn evil to good. Try to bear patiently with the defects and infirmities of others, whatever they may be, because you also have many a fault which others must endure." [I. 16]

    "Fight like a man. Habit is overcome by habit. If you leave men alone, they will leave you alone to do what you have to do. Do not busy yourself about the affairs of others and do not become entangled in the business of your superiors. Keep an eye primarily on yourself and admonish yourself instead of your friends. If you do not enjoy the favor of men, do not let it sadden you; but consider it a serious matter if you do not conduct yourself as well or as carefully as is becoming for a servant of God…" [I. 21]

  81. kris says:

    My opinion on this matter holds no more weight than does yours, and vice versa.

    Another wish wash bland response there. Our Faith combines faith … and reason. Opinions should be based on something of reason and the greater weight of that basis the greater weight should be given an "opinion". There is far more "smoke" out there regarding an obvious flame (example from C. Schoenborn's reasoning) than repetitive doubts alone that refuse to acknowledge those facts and also refuse to be corrected by those taking the time and patience to correct the misinformation.

    And I never heard St. Theresa mention anything specifically for or against Medjugorje unless you have been in some personal conversation with her on that topic! So referencing her in some general manner cannot apply in any way specifically. On that basis alone you should refrain from including the saints of the past in defense of your own wishful thinking of just what their opinions may or may not be on this subject. Now then more contemporary "saints" who have had true experience here (much more then than yourself) are somehow always kept out of such "reasonable" debates… in that case, Mother Theresa herself as well as our great Pope amidst so many other unmistakably holy persons in just that category of Marian mystical experience ought to be the examples given for just why people do lean in a way differing from your own. Why not use those examples in your great openness to all the offerings on the subject?!! Hmmmm! So, no, all opinions do not equal themselves to one another. Some have a lot more going for them in actuality to be trusted than others – those that are quite divorced and comfortable in that remote area of non-experience and apparent fear of causing the possibility of change to those "opinions" should obviously then be given less weight.

    Unless you're quoting someone verbatim, your habit of randomly putting quote marks around words for sarcasm's sake is distracting, unnecessary, and paltry. Just say what you want to say.

    Such pre-conceived judgment of the minds of others again! Sorry to annoy the thin skinned but quotations are to emphasize a difference in the weight given to the usage of a word already selected by one party within the debate. And, btw, they themselves point out that yes, there is most often misinformation in the usage of terms and that misinformation is in need of some correction.

  82. Steven says:

    I just believe that if Medjugorje were a real apparition of Mary why Mary of Medjugorje would not be saying things like, why haven't you done yet what I've asked when I appeared to you at Fatima. Or has the Church officially consecrated Russia yet and I missed it. It just seems to me an apparition of Mary would not come and contradict her previous appearing or not make mention of not fulfilling actions asked for in a previous appearing. Doesn't make sense. Until it is officially recognized by the Church/Magisterium then I'm free to not accept it. I agree with Patrick's comment above on the subject. A very well put response. Thank you Patrick.

  83. Patrick says:

    What leads me to doubt, and strongly so, is that the bishop of Mostar is the authority.

    What if the bishop is just being stubborn? Ask Our Lady of Guadalupe. Simply put, the Blessed Virgin Mary has the means at her disposal, through God, to make her presence known to a bishop in such a way to touch his heart.

    As such, I can see the cultus surrounding these visionaries to be nothing more than deleterious fideism, that is faith because they WANT it to be true.

  84. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    Well, since my name was tossed into the mix here, let me just make one small point.

    The Church's official stand right now is that nothing supernatural is happening there — and official, church-sponsored pilgrimages are prohibited. Private pilgrimages are acceptable.

    Above and beyond my own personal feelings about this phenomenon, and the allegations surrounding it, I also have a responsibility as a member of the Catholic clergy. I can not endorse something that does not have Church approval, or which might be inconsistent with Church teaching.

    I have cautioned people to treat this event with caution and skepticism. And so they should. The fruits of Medjugorje are a decidedly mixed batch — witness the frenzied, often hostile debate in the blogosphere — and you can't be too careful.

    Blessings,
    Dcn. G.

  85. MidlandLifeNetwork says:

    All this squabbling is the antithesis of what Medjugorije is supposed to be all about.
    I have just returned from there after my second pilgrimage.I experienced an exceptional renewal of my Catholic faith and a resolve to a greater committment to the sacraments esspecially confession and the Eucharist,weekly fasting and daily rosary.At all of the talks I went to by the local Franciscans there was virtually no mention of the visionaries,the miracles of the sun or other unusual phenomena or the messages.
    The compltete focus was on the Church,personal conversion through the sacraments and prayer as the first priority in all our lives.
    I made a definite priority to focus my week's pilgrimage on personal and communal prayer,daily mass, confession and a daily climb of Cross mountain while meditating on the rosary.At no time did I seek any ''miracles '' of the sun or weeping statue etc.However one evening at sunset someone called me from prayer and I looked up and ..Yes indeed I witnessed a very unusual phenomenon in the sky…I have witnessed sunsets all over the world in all sorts of conditions and all I can say is that I never saw anything like I witnessed that evening.The following evenings I only saw a normal sunset.I had no interest in this kind of thing whatsoever and I went to Medjugorije at first as a confirmed skeptic however I saw what I saw and I can't explain it!
    My initial skepticism about the visionaries and the people of Medjugorije has been diminished by my experience there.Just last night as it happens one of the visionaries Ivana Ivankovic was in a parish near my home in Ireland.I went to the rosary,mass and Ivana's short talk.I had also heard Marija talk in Medjugorije.If you heard any of these visionaries speak through interpreters in their quiet,humble,shy manner ,telling their story without any razzle dazzle in very simple Church environments then it is a powerful testimony to their bona fides.Ivana spoke in a small Church in a small town in provincial Ireland to maybe 300 people.We said the rosary and had mass first.She told of her experiences in the first few days in Medjugorije then how her daily visions had ended and eventually the remaining three visionaries's daily visions will end too.
    Her message was the message of the Church,conversion,prayer,confession ,communion more prayer and more confession and then weekly fasting…no mention of miracles of the sun or healings etc.Her mission is to pray for families and family life.According to Fr Svet the messages are all similar and appear banal because Our Lady appears to be repeating herself.Why ? you may ask? well she repeats the same thing because we are not listening yet!
    Fr Svet also said that the communists did the Church a massive favour in the first week of the visions by banning public gatherings on the hill thus forcing the people back to the parish Church where the program of masses ,confessions and spiritual talks started.I had all the same skeptical questions however against all the rational resistance I could muster my skepticism has been slowly eroded and the more I pray and devote my life to the Lord through the sacraments the more at ease I am about Medjugorije.I am not going to try and convince anyone,they can go themselves and see what is going on there however all I can say is that my committment to the Lord,the Church and the sacraments has increased greatly with my Medjugorije experience.Fr Svet asks us to go on a genuine pilgrimage while we are there,forget visons,the messgaes the miracles and Pray,go to confession and spend time with the Lord in adoration.Let's not squabble among ourselves,the message of Medjugorije is to Pray for eachother not to argue about the bona fides of supernatural phenomena.

  86. Papa_Rods says:

    Okay…wow! All I can say is the fruit borne will bear out the authenticity, real or not of this apparition. I must say that I personally feel the Medjugorje is not at all authentic. I base this on what I have read concerning those who have had these experiences and the results of them. Looking at St. Therese, the children at Fatima, and Saint Bernadette shows a distinct counter to the experience of Medjugorje. No fancy homes or relaxed lives were in store for them, indeed it seems as if only more participation in the suffering of Christ was a result. Bravo to you Patrick! As you stated, time will tell.

  87. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Hi Steve here

    Despite not a shred of evidence of a conspiracy, collusion, co-conspirator, mysterious profiteers in the back ground whispering in the visionaries ears, – despite the most investigated supernatural event in history, scientists, medical professionals etc. despite video recording of the apparition for decades – despite the enormous spiritual fruits you believe it is a hoax based on some research done by "volunteers"

    I base much of my position on Medjugorje on the work of Randall Sullivan. He is an esteemed author – one of the most prominent INVESTIGATIVE journalist's on the planet, former writer for the ROlling Stones magazine and he spent eight years of his life working on the book. Furthermore I look to Cardinal Schonborn as well – these are the guys look to for answers (note if you have not read Randall Sullivan's book "Miracle Detective" I highly recommend)

    But you have touched on something much more important than all that. You call Our Lady's messages "Repetitive and banal" I can tell you right now that the messages from medjugorje are why I have returned to the church, why I go to confession, why I go to my Church often alone and sit before the alter and engage in the sacrament of adoration.
    Our Lady talks about "Putting God in the first place in our lives", to pray, pray, pray, to seek peace in our hearts. To love. She says this every month you are right. The messages of Our Lady are what get people to convert (at least for me)

    But to me Patrick, do you know what is banal ? Pull up a blog or Christian/Catholic site. There you will encounter a cacophony of noise – pedophilia, gay marriage, homosexuality, Nancy Pelosi, right/left liberal conservative – religion defined by your political leanings.
    I go to Our Lady's messages and i find a language of peace.. words that reach inside my soul and reveal to me a path to salvation and love.
    So as I have said before Medjugorje works either way for me. If it is Our Lady than the world will never be the same . If it is a wizard again as I have said before – I want to shake the wizards hand and thank him or her for trying to make this world a better place – I want to thank them for bringing peace, prayer and Love back to my faith

  88. Nick says:

    Hey Patrick!

    Devotees of condemned apparitions, like Bayside, use Saint Gamaliel's advice in Acts 5:38-39 to attack skeptics in that they believe an ongoing apparition is proof it is from God. Just a thought.

    Related Links:
    SAINT GAMALIEL
    REVELATION

  89. Patrick Madrid says:

    What you dismiss as nit-picking nonsense, I see as substantive and important.

    I have tried to be as clear and as specific as possible in explaining my skepticism. Much of it is aggregated here: http://patrickmadrid.blogspot.com/search?q=medjugorje.

    As for my opinion of what's happening now, it seems to me that the alleged seers have no choice but to continue issuing a never-ending stream of alleged messages from Our Lady, messages which for nearly 30 years now have been excruciatingly repetitive and banal. The alleged seers have no choice but to continue with their claims to receive apparitions on demand, wherever they happen to be. The tragic aspect of this is that it gives the impression that Our Lady has become a kind of performing circus act for the alleged seers. She will appear on command, as it were, at their conference appearances and other speaking engagements. Just think of how great that is for those who are in the business of arranging these events! Surely you see, Steve, that one of the many problematical aspects of the Medjugorje phenomenon is how it commercializes everything associated with it. That's actually just a residual side-effect of what's been happening, but it's a noxious residue nonetheless.

    I simply don't see how the strange and disquieting circus atmosphere surrounding the alleged Medjugorje apparitions and the alleged seers, who jet-set around the world collecting handsome speaking fees for their appearances, in any way resembles the quiet, humble, mortified piety which has been so evident in the authentic apparitions (and seers) of Our Lady at places such as Fatima, Lourdes, Akita, Guadalupe, and Rue de Bac.

  90. Arch Hall B& B says:

    "There is a protocol in the blogosphere that when you are going to talk about someone, you typically link to the page in which you agree or disagree with them on."

    Seriously Dianne K did you really write the above statement?
    The whole point of this conversation on the comments section revolves around the fact that Patrick did not post/link to my article yet his blog post was about my article. Now my article is being discussed and still thier is no access to my article from this blog.

  91. Arch Hall B& B says:

    i have looked at the site carefully..It is tortured gobbledygook .. Again i am choosing my words carefully.. I really have tough time reading his stuff eg "From omission to concealment to duplicity in one major writing from René Laurentin" It is a grand theatrical conspiracy stuff. He may be dead right but I can't read it. He may have revealed the entire hoax but I wish he could just tell me what is going on NOW. His stuff is nit picking nonsense that still does not answer the question "What were the seers doing in Schonborn's Cathedral. Patrick just please give me your opinion on that YOUR opinion

    s

  92. Patrick Madrid says:

    Sure, Steve. I can respect that. And I hope you can respect my conscious decision to respond as I did. If you can't or won't, then I guess that would just be further proof of my charge that, when it comes to Medjugorje discussions, you have a double standard.

    You're not buying what I'm selling? What do you think I am selling here?

    That aside, I find it remarkable that you assure us that politeness is important to you. Fair enough. But you say, you choose your language to stimulate (e.g., "some dude named 'Akin'"). What is it you wish to stimulate? Irritation?

    Big boys should act their age, don't you think?

    And as for your demand that skeptics bring you the wizard at the heart of the Medjugorje phenomenon, apparently you have not paid attention to the mountains of hard data, documents, videos, etc., that folks like Louis Bélanger have brought forth demonstrating the real, serious, and enduring problems with the alleged apparitions. There is a lot there. I hope you will take the time and energy to really investigate those facts. Please see site such as http://en.louisbelanger.com and http://medjugorjedocuments.blogspot.com for what I'm talking about.

  93. Diane M. Korzeniewski, OCDS says:

    Steve Ryan says: as I said to the "doubters" Bring me the Wizard who invented Medjugorje and Medjugorje will stop. Medjugorje is no longer about Bishop of Mostar . It is about what the "visionaries" are seeing today when they stand in Cardinal Schonborn's St Stephen's Cathedral

    Interesting…. I thought it was about what the Holy See decides?

    As an aside, Steve, I think Patrick has you on a number of points. So as not to get the post too long, let's just start with this one:

    There is a protocol in the blogosphere that when you are going to talk about someone, you typically link to the page in which you agree or disagree with them on.

    However, your very frequent (seemingly several times weekly) ad hominem posts deriding the bishop of Mostar, skeptics, and critics of Medjugorje, do not offer readers an opportunity to see for themselves what you are referring to.

    Further, is the chronic, and unprofessional manner in which your site refers to people who do not believe in the authenticity of something which has not been deemed worthy of belief at any level of the Church (Cardinal Schonborn does not represent a "level" of authority on Medjugorje).

    If Cardinal Bertone can say openly that he is skeptical aout Medjugorje, or Cardinal Saraiva Martins, Prefect-emeeritus of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (one who has good discernment experience), then why is it not ok for "Joe Q Pew Sitter" to voice skepticism?

  94. Arch Hall B& B says:

    About "complaining" As you can see from my first comment I was not complaining about your post my first response was to symonds' comment against me and my intention was to respond to that alone. as you can see from my first point I had no quibble with your article.. it did not bother me at all initially that you did not name me or post my article. (i did find it a little strange) but now that a discussion has formed I am indeed "complaining" now that you have not posted/linked the article. it is bizarre quite frankly

  95. Arch Hall B& B says:

    About the "dude" Remember what i said to Symonds – my language is meant to stimulate … I choose my words carefully – for better of worse – We are all big boys here.

    I am not buying what you are selling Patrick. You are twisting yourself into a knot. Of course your post was about me and my article. I am not complaining about not being heard I am saying if you are going to go to the trouble of commenting about by article then you should post it or link to it. Also I intentionally left out "skeptics" names out of politeness . I do not take pride in naming names. I felt it was necessary the first go round but i felt it was bad manners to go tit for tat and dragging people names into all over again- it was a conscious decision on my part. I hope you can respect that

  96. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Hi steve ryan here

    Patrick i admire you participation in comments ..a lot guys just say their piece then cut and run so thank you for that. but with that said without posting my article you are really misrepresenting what I said in my piece. The essence of my article was not about who is right and who is wrong on Medjugorje – It was about the extraordinary fact that nobody has been able to figure out what the heck is happening .. as I said to the "doubters" Bring me the Wizard who invented Medjugorje and Medjugorje will stop. Medjugorje is no longer about Bishop of Mostar . It is about what the "visionaries" are seeing today when they stand in Cardinal Schonborn's St Stephen's Cathedral.

  97. Patrick Madrid says:

    Steve, as I wrote that blog post, I couldn't help but thinking of the refrain in that Carly Simon song that goes, "You probably think this song is about you." (I'm suggesting here that that line applies to you, not the title of the song.)

    Do you really mean to say with a straight face that a handful of Catholic bloggers really wield such influence? Nah. You'd be surprised how very many people have never and will never hear of me. And why do you complain about bloggers who can shape opinions of others? Isn't that the point of blogging, anyway? I fear that your problem is that you only complain about others' opinions on Medjugorje which conflict with your opinions. But I'm quite sure that you would be delighted at all the pro-Medjugorje bloggers who are shaping their readers' opinions in a positive direction regarding Medjugorje. See what's going on there? It's called a double standard.

    Also, no, I'm not going to be your factory rep to promote your blog. If you want to promote your blog and articles and opinions far and wide, I have no problem with that. More power to you, man! But you'll have to do the hard work to make that happen, just as I have done the hard work to draw what readers I may have to this blog. You posted your article, and I responded to it. And I must again point out that pesky double standard you take with you into these Medjugorje discussions. You seem unhappy that my article did not mention your name or link to your blog. And yet, your article mentioned no names, just anonymous "skeptics" and gave no links to anyone's skeptical comments. I believe in reciprocity, and that's why I wrote my blog post as I did. You, on the other hand, have a double standard and, in my book, that's a no no when it comes to rational discourse.

    And finally, I know you can use Google or Bing to search for someone's name, especially someone who has a modicum of visibility in the Catholic world. To refer derisively to "some dude named 'Akin'" is just silliness.

    God bless you, Steve.

  98. Patrick Madrid says:

    Sitting on the fence? Hardly. I've been very clear that I doubt Medjugorje is an authentic Marian apparition. Since that has not yet been proven, all I can do is say that "I doubt it's authentic." There is nothing ambivalent or akin to "wanting to have it both ways" inherent in what I have said on this subject. Similarly, since Medjugorje has not been proven to be authentic, the best that Medjugorje promoters can do is assert that they believe it's true. But just as my doubting it does not disprove Medjugorje, your believing it's true does not make it true. It's just your opinion and my opinion. My opinion on this matter holds no more weight than does yours, and vice versa.

    And you sneer at my so-called sage advice? Wow. I simply quoted Scripture and the wisdom of Saint Teresa. That you feel the need to dismiss their advice says a lot. And if you did not intend to give the impression that you dismiss that advice, then my advice to you is that you relax, settle down, and be at peace. Why does this Medjugorje thing rob you and so many others of your peace? Relax, I say.

    And finally, since I'm in sage mode right now, I'll offer you another tidbit of my own advice: Unless you're quoting someone verbatim, your habit of randomly putting quote marks around words for sarcasm's sake is distracting, unnecessary, and paltry. Just say what you want to say.

  99. kris says:

    Patrick, you ought to set the example of your own considered "sage" advice to others and refrain from your own ongoing noticeable knee jerk reactions (always faintly giving yourself some fence sitting cover of "still being open" while negative always in your ongoing advice to those more assured in their conclusions than apparently you are) to anyone with obviously more personal hands on experience than yourself with the subject.

    As bloggers or various Medjugorje supporters remain, in comparison, nameless or without "Catholic world" name recognition as you enjoy, you might in charity give them some equal playing ground benefit! If one truly is defending, in their normal human reaction of protecting a "Mother" they love and believe in, through a certain natural protective instinct of Her, I see nothing wrong with that loving human quality. Perhaps our "sages" of all things Catholic these days need to remember that love is the essence of what should always be authentically Christian.

    It would appear from the Word that Christ has more sympathy for those who are either hot or cold than for those conveniently sitting on the fence while "correcting" those others!!

  100. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Hi steve ryan here

    Tiny Handful?

    The reality is the American Catholic Press and high profile Catholic Bloggers who shape opinion in this country and including views towards medjugorje are decidedly "against" Medjugorje. Patrick Coffin, Mark Shea, Greg Kandra, Patrick Madrid, some dude named "Akin" Creative Miniorty report just to name a few. This group represents a large swath of active and engaged Catholics who form opinions.
    It would be nice also if you would post my article if you are going to go to the trouble of commenting on it .. Thanks
    http://ministryvalues.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1211&Itemid=214

  101. Arch Hall B& B says:

    Hi this is steve ryan.. I was not going to jump back in but Symonds' use of creepy innuendo against me and Dr. Marivalle is beyond the pail.
    Symonds if you have something to say just say it. Yes I told you my writing style is intentionally meant to stimulate- to provoke.If you call that making a "name for my self" that is your opinion. I call it good writing. You are right my writing is meant to be noticed. I think anybody who put pen to paper has that objective. My love for Our Lady is a message I want to share and the emptiness of spirit I see all around me even in the Church is something that I want to speak about.

  102. RC says:

    For dcinadr: While it's understandable to pose the above question to doubters, it's actually based on a condition that cannot happen.

    The Church, in its procedures for evaluating private revelations, never actually states that they are definitely real, and never requires the faithful to believe in them.

    The most favorable verdict possible would say that the faithful are free to believe in a reported apparition, treating it as a matter of human credibility.

  103. Kevin Symonds says:

    Patrick, I have spoken to the person to whom you are addressing. It is best to leave the man be. He has intentions to make a name for himself. He admitted that to me and I have this in writing.

  104. Vincenzo says:

    Patrick wrote: "Just pray for God's will to be done in this matter."

    Great advice.

    BTW, related, Louis Bélanger has a new article up today:

    click here

    And he has been ill so if people could please pray for his health..

  105. dcinadr says:

    Patrick, what if after the Churches investigation decided that the apparitions are real. Would that change your opinion?

  106. Patrick Madrid says:

    Hi, Dcinadr. Well, I have a number of concerns, some of which I've sketched out in various blog posts (aggregated here: http://patrickmadrid.blogspot.com/search?q=medjugorje).

    One thing that might help folks gain a clearer, more comprehensive understanding of the pros and cons surrounding Medjugorje would be to record a lengthy interview/discussion on this subject with someone who favors Medjugorje. We could calmly and systematically delve into and discuss the specific issues in a leisurely and substantive way. I'd certainly welcome doing something like that, if the right opportunity arose.

  107. Amy says:

    I am a poor person, working poor. The notion of going on a pilgrimage to any of the great places of the world, where Mary has or does appear, has never been an option for myself. However, the gift of the church is the availability of the Presence of Christ in the Sacrament. We have a 24 hour, perpetual adoration chapel, and I can make a pilgrimage any time and frequently, and it is FREE! Mass is free! Praying the rosary and offering my vocation of motherhood up as a sacrificial prayer does not require a passport. I thank God for simplifying things for me, for the business of sanctification is arduous. And Mary is only a memorare away.

  108. Patrick Madrid says:

    Hi, Jackie. No, I have not gone there.

  109. jprincipe2 says:

    Really good points. I really needed to see this today. St. Theresa's words about peace.
    If the Church does not require us to believe in the Apparitions in order to be a Roman Catholic in good standing. Then who is anyone else to insist that a person who doubts is wrong.
    Anything that robs us of our peace is not of God. That is so true. We should be at peace.

  110. wayofsuffering says:

    Amen.

  111. Jackie Parkes MJ says:

    Have you been Patrick?

  112. Kellee says:

    I have to say that the scripture passage is good advise. If the Holy Spirit is moving you at Medugorje, then allow it to move you, and don't worry about other people.

  113. dcinadr says:

    Curious – what is the reason for your doubt?

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