Our Lady of Medjugorje

Our Lady of Medjugorje (Croatian: Međugorska Gospa), also called Queen of Peace (Croatian: Kraljica mira) and Mother of the Redeemer (Croatian: Majka Otkupiteljica), is the title given to the "visions" of the Blessed Virgin Mary which allegedly began in 1981 to six Croatian teenagers in Medjugorje, Bosnia and Herzegovina (at the time in SFR Yugoslavia). The "visionaries" are: Ivan Dragičević, Ivanka Ivanković, Jakov Čolo, Marija Pavlović, Mirjana Dragičević and Vicka Ivanković and ranged in age from ten to sixteen years old at the time of the first "apparition."

Our Lady of Medjugorje
Statue of Our Lady of Medjugorje (cropped).jpg
Statue of Our Lady of Medjugorje
LocationMedjugorje, Bosnia and Herzegovina and a number of other locations
Date24 June 1981 – ongoing
Witness
  • Ivan Dragićević
  • Ivanka Ivanković
  • Jakov Čolo
  • Marija Pavlović
  • Mirjana Dragićević
  • Vicka Ivanković
TypeMarian apparition
ShrineMedjugorje

There have also been continued reports of the visionaries seeing and receiving messages from the apparition of Our Lady (Gospa) during the years since. The seers often refer to the apparition as the "Gospa",[1] which is a Croatian archaism for lady. On May 13, 2017, a papal response came when Pope Francis declared that the original visions reported by the teenagers are worth studying in more depth, while the subsequent continued visions over the years are, in his view, of dubious value.[2] As a pastoral initiative, after considering the considerable number of people who go to Medjugorje and the abundant fruits of grace that have sprung from it,[3] the ban on officially organized pilgrimages was lifted by the Pope in May 2019. This was made official with the celebration of a youth festival among pilgrims and Catholic clergy in Medjugorie for five days in August 2019.[4] However this was not to be interpreted as an authentication of known events, which still require examination by the Church.[3] Clerics and the faithful are not permitted to participate in meetings, conferences or public celebrations during which the credibility of such 'apparitions' would be taken for granted.[5]

BackgroundEdit

Political situationEdit

At the time of the apparitions, the village of Medjugorje was in Bosnia and Herzegovina. part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, a federation of various Slavic nations. There were tensions among the nations, exacerbated by religious difference: most Croats are Catholic, most Serbs are Eastern Orthodox, while the Bosnians and Herzegovinians are a mix of the two and included in the third group – the Bosnian Muslims.[6] The death of President Josip Broz Tito in early May 1980 had led to anti-communist backlash and the build up of ethnic tensions, destabililizing the country.[7][8] Yugoslavia was moving towards political, economic, and national collapse.[9][6] The political crisis generated the economic one and the public debt soared. The Albanian anti-Serb riots in Kosovo in 1981 were an example of national dissatisfaction. After Tito's death, the security apparatus enhanced its activities against the perceived "enemies of the state", especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina, where the apparatus was most loyal to Tito. Such activity was especially oriented towards the Catholic Church in Herzegovina.[9]

In addition, the election of the Pope John Paul II from the communist Poland and the Catholic Solidarity Movement intensified the conflict between the Vatican and the Soviet-dominated Eastern Europe.[6][8]

In the 1980s there was a boom of Marian apparitions in Europe, especially in Ireland and Italy. Chris Maunder connects these apparitions, including those in Medjugorje, with the anti-communist movement in Eastern Europe that led to the downfall of communism.[6][clarification needed]

Religious situationEdit

 
Paškal Buconjić, a Franciscan and the first bishop of Mostar-Duvno established the Parish of Medjugorje

The Franciscan Province of Herzegovina was established in 1843 when it seceded from the Franciscan Province of Bosna Srebrena. In 1846, the Holy See established the Apostolic Vicariate of Herzegovina, which was then part of the Ottoman Empire and it was considered to be a mission area. The first vicars were all Franciscans. In 1881, the area came under the control of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and Pope Leo XIII took steps to establish dioceses and appoint local bishops.[10] As part of re-establishing normal church structures, the bishops worked to transfer parishes from the Franciscans to the diocesan clergy. The Apostolic Vicariate was elevated to the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, which included Medjugorje.

The Franciscans of Herzegovina saw this as a threat, depriving them of a source of income and their role as community social leaders which they attained over centuries of “difficult missionary” work while under Turkish domination.[11]

A jurisdictional conflict arose, known as the Herzegovina Affair or Herzegovina Case which dates back to 1923, when Rome made a decision to have the Franciscans turn over half of the parishes they control to the secular clergy. A smooth transition was inhibited by both a lack of sufficient diocesan clergy and by the resistance of the friars to the divestment of their parishes. The Franciscans complied only partially and have refused to comply with Rome's decisions ever since.[11] Their resistance to this change put them into conflict with the Church's hierarchy, including their Franciscan Order in Rome. Their resistance to comply was against both church authority and canon law.[11]

Pope Pius XI requested the whole Catholic world to erect crosses on the dominant mountains in honor of the 1900th anniversary of the crucifixion of Jesus.[12][when?] In 1933 a massive cross was erected by the local Catholic diocese on a mountain near Medjuorje.[13] The 1,770-foot peak was originally named Mount Sipovac but the locals changed the name to Mount Krizevac which means “Mount of the Cross.” They constructed the 33-foot-high cross weighing fifteen tons in six weeks, carrying all the building materials on their backs.[14][15]

In 1975, Pope Paul VI, Romanis Pontificibus, decreed that the Franciscans must withdraw from most of the parishes in the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, retaining 30 and leaving 52 to the diocesan clergy. In the 1980s the Franciscans still held 40 parishes under the direction of 80 friars.[16] In August 1980, the new bishop of Mostar, Pavao Zanic immediately announced that only one quarter of the city would remain under the Franciscans.

Initial eventsEdit

According to the seers, on 24 June 1981 around 4pm, fifteen-year-old Ivanka Ivanković and her friend, a sixteen-year-old, Mirjana Dragičević, were returning to the village, after having gone for a walk to have a smoke. Ivanka was startled to notice the shimmering silhouette of a woman bathed in a brilliant light on nearby Mount Podbrdo. She immediately said, “Mirjana, look, it’s Gospa!” (Our Lady) [14] She brought this to Marija's attention, but Marija scoffed at the idea and they continued on their way. They then met Milka Pavlovic, 13, who asked them to help bring in the sheep, so the three returned to the nearby hill, where all three saw the apparition. They were then joined by their friend Vicka Ivanković, 17, who saw the Gospa and was so frightened, she ran down the hill. Driven by curiosity, she returned with Ivan Dragičević, 16, and Ivan Ivankovic, 20 who were picking apples. Ivan Dragičević was so frightened that he dropped his apples and bolted. Later they said they all saw the same apparition.[17] "The Medjugorje visions began only days after Orthodox Serbs commemorated the 40th anniversary of mass killings of Serbs by the Ustaše at Šurmanci during the Second World War."[18]

The next day Ivanka Ivankovic, Mirjana Dragicevic, Vicka Ivankovic, and Ivan Dragicevic returned to the site. Ivan Ivankovic did not accompany them. As Milka Pavlovic's mother kept her home to help in the garden, Vicka Ivankovic brought along Milka's sister, Marija Pavlovic, and ten-year-old Jakov Colo. Milka experienced no further apparitions. The six seers told the Franciscan friar Father Jozo Zovko, who was the parish priest at St. James Church in Medjugorje,[19] that they had seen the Virgin Mary.[20] They described her as "...a young woman about twenty years old, they said, with blue eyes, black hair, and a crown of stars around Her head; She wore a white veil and bluish-grey robe. Each of the children said they had not been able to see the Virgin's feet, described Her as hovering just above the ground on a white cloud, and said She spoke in a singing voice."[21]

Further developmentsEdit

The Mostar Cathedral of Mary, Mother of the Church was completed in the summer of 1980. In order to create the cathedral parish it was decided to split the parish of SS. Peter and Paul. The Franciscans objected to this as being unfair.[22] Friars Ivica Vego and Ivan Prusina, were chaplains in the parish of SS Peter and Paul in Mostar, who refused to obey the Papal decree Romanis Pontificibus and relocate from the parish. After several warnings, Bishop Žanić suspended their priestly faculties throughout the dioceses under his jurisdiction.

Yugoslav officials condemned the reports as "clerical-nationalist" conspiracy on the part of Croat extremists.[23] Bishop Žanić took a stand for the seers and the local Franciscans against the communist authorities who tried to prosecute them. He informed the Pope about the events in September 1981.

Vicka allegedly received messages from the Madonna from 19 December 1981 until 29 September 1982, and recorded them in her diary.[24] On 21 September Fr. Ivan Prusina, along with other Franciscans, with the help of the crowd, violently expelled diocesan priests from the parish.[citation needed]

On 15 January 1982, the bishop invited the alleged seers to his residence to ask them if there were any messages from the Madonna on the issue, and they replied that there were not. However, on 3 April 1982, the seers came to the bishop to tell him that the Madonna scolded them for not telling the truth and that she requested that the two friars remain in Mostar and continue to celebrate mass and hear confessions. The Madonna allegedly told Vicka that Fr. Ivan Prusina and Fr. Ivica Vego "are not guilty of anything" in the matter.[25][26] Tomislav Vlašić took responsibility for the lies of the seers telling the bishop he instructed them not to tell the truth because the bishop might dispute the authenticity of the apparitions.[27]

On 21 June 1983, one of the seers, Ivan Dragičević, sent a threatening message allegedly from the Madonna to the bishop, in which she requests the bishop's conversion regarding her apparitions, otherwise, he would be "judged by me and my son Jesus.”[27][28] On 6 February 1985, Ivan Dragičević sent somewhat more tolerant message from the Madonna, with her stating that if he doesn't believe in her apparitions, at least he shouldn't persecute her priests who believe in her messages and promote them.”[27][29]

In the opinion of Peter Jan Margry’s, the deviancy of such reported Marian apparitions is observed in their formal espousing of Catholic teachings, and obedience to the Church and the Pope, while in practice, they consider the messages to be authentic revelations, have connections to excommunicated priests, and disobey the Church and the Pope.[30]

The Archbishop of Split-Makarska Frane Franić, who supported the alleged apparitions from the beginning, tried to persuade Vicka to retract the messages about the two friars, so the authenticity of the apparitions could be defended more easily.[27] However, both Vicka and Ivan continued to claim that the messages regarding the two friars were from the Madonna.[26] The messages included the accusations against Bishop Pavao Žanić and encouragement for the two friars not to leave the parish.[31] It was then when Bishop Pavao took his final negative stance on the alleged apparitions.[32]

The whole of that time, the Bishop remained cautious towards the apparitions, without any final conclusion. He became skeptical towards the apparitions after the apparition accused him of the disorder in Herzegovina that existed between the Franciscans and the diocesan clergy and defended the two Franciscans who refused to leave their parishes as requested by the Papal decree Romanis Pontificibus.[33]

Because of his disobedience, Fr. Ivan Prusina had his priestly jurisdiction revoked by Bishop Pavao Žanić on 9 October 1980. Fr. Ivan Prusina and Fr. Ivica Vego appealed to the Franciscan Order and the Congregation for Clergy, who declined their appeal considering the decisions to be final. However, the Apostolic Signatura, the highest judicial court of the Holy See, concluded on 27 March 1993 that they had a right on appeal and saw this as a violation of the procedure and declared the dismissal to be null and void;[34] the same followed for Fr. Ivica Vego as well.[35] The Franciscan Province of Herzegovina tried to present this as a sign of victory against the bishop, however, the bishop's revocation of Fr. Ivan Prusina's priestly jurisdiction remained in force,[34] and the Apostolic Signature never reviewed the matter itself, only the procedural defects.[35] It later became known that Fr. Ivica Vego had impregnated a nun, whom he eventually married and lives with her near Medjugorje.[36] Velikonja wrote that it "would not have succeeded had it not been for the rich and long religious tradition of the region."[37]

Government responseEdit

In 1982, the communist authorities changed their stance towards the Medjugorje phenomenon and no longer observed the event as political, but as an economic benefit. In the winter of 1983, the authorities started to promote religious tourism. The state-owned publishing houses issued books of the supporters of Medjugorje, including Ljudevit Rupčić's book The Madonna's apparitions in Medjugorje (Croatian: Gospina ukazanja u Međugorju) in 1983. The state-owned tourist agencies also started offering their services to the Medjugorje pilgrims in 1984. The state-owned aviation company Jat Airways introduced special lines for the pilgrims from Italy. From the mid-1980s, the communist media also became supportive of the Medjugorje phenomenon, emphasising its economic aspects.[38]

Catholic Church responseEdit

First diocesan commissionEdit

"If, on the occasion of a presumed supernatural fact, there arises in a spontaneous way among the faithful a certain cult or some devotion, the competent Ecclesiastical Authority has the serious duty of looking into it without delay and of diligently watching over it."[39] The competent Ecclesiastical Authority, in the first instance, is the local Ordinary.

 
Bishop Pavao Žanić established the first two commissions for the investigation of the alleged apparitions

In the beginning, Bishop Pavao Žanić of Mostar defended the seers from the communist authorities that tried to suppress the cult of Our Lady of Medjugorje,[33] but at the same time avoided recognizing the apparitions as authentic. He informed the Pope about the events in September 1981. In January 1982, Žanić established the first of two commissions for the investigation of the apparitions. The first commission, made up of four members was active from 1982 to 1984.[40]

Žanić was quickly disillusioned with the phenomenon after three of the seers claimed that the Madonna supported the Herzegovinian Franciscans in their pretension for parishes in the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, an old dispute between them and the diocese known as the Herzegovina Affair.[41] He became skeptical towards the apparitions after it was alleged that the apparition accused him of the disorder in Herzegovina that existed between the Franciscans and the diocesan clergy and defended the two Franciscans who refused to leave their parishes as requested by the Papal decree Romanis Pontificibus.[33] The Franciscans used the apparitions to promote their interests, claiming that they come from the Madonna, while the bishop claimed that they were a product of Franciscan manipulation.[41] Žanić accused the Franciscans of manipulating the seers, forbade pilgrimages and transferred the spiritual director of the seers Tomislav Vlašić, whose sexual scandal wasn't known yet at the time. In August 1984, Vlašić was replaced by Franciscan friar Slavko Barbarić,[41] who, unbeknownst to Žanić, was already working in Medjugorje.

Second diocesan commissionEdit

In February 1984, Žanić expanded the initial commission to fifteen members. It included nine professors from various theological faculties and two psychiatrists.[42]

The second commission examined Fr. Tomislav Vlašić's Chronicles and Vicka's diaries. The Chronicles and diaries were found to be non-credible, with records kept irregularly, entered subsequently, and some parts of Vicka's diaries forged.[40] The commission asked Vlašić to hand over the Chronicle, which Vlašić did, but only with a long delay and after modifying the Chronicle.[43] In May 1986, the Commission declared that it could not establish that the events in Medjugorje were of a supernatural character.

Yugoslav bishopsEdit

Medjugorje had become a global phenomenon, while Žanić's authority was undermined by the supporters of the phenomenon.[41] In January 1987, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, suggested that the matter be referred from the local ordinary to the Yugoslav Bishops Conference,[44] which agreed with the second commission and ruled "non constat de supernaturalitate,” stating in April 1991 that, "on the basis of studies it cannot be affirmed that supernatural apparitions and revelations are occurring."

The Conference had instructed that pilgrimages should not be organized to Medjugorje on the supposition of its being supernatural, which ruling remained in effect.[45] In its declaration the commission noted that thousands of pilgrims come to Medujorje and were in need of pastoral care.

Bishop Žanić retired in 1993. In April 1995, during the Bosnian War, his successor, Bishop Ratko Perić, and Perić's secretary were abducted and beaten by Croat militiamen in a local Franciscan chapel. They were held for eight hours until rescued by UN peacekeepers and the Mayor of Mostar.[23] In October 1997, Bishop Perić, in response to a letter, expressed his personal opinion that the events alleged at Medjugorje were no longer non constat de supernaturalitate (that their supernatural nature is not established) but constat de non supernaturalitate (it is not of a supernatural nature).[46]

The Vatican commission set up to study Medjugorje concluded on 18 January 2014.[47] On 7 May 2015, Pope Francis announced the results would be released soon.[48] On 11 June 2015, the Vatican's chief spokesman communicated that no decision was expected until the Fall of 2015.[49]

Pope John Paul IIEdit

 
Pope John Paul II

“Our Lady of Medjugorje attracted a vast international following that included many members of the Catholic hierarchy, among them Pope John Paul II.”[50] It was common knowledge, that the Pope was sympathetic to this Marian site,[51] seeing it as a continuation of Fatima in the battle with communism.[52] "As the pilgrimage site acquired its national and international reputation, it became a powerful symbol of the power of religion against the Communist Yugoslav regime."[53]

There were many statements attributed to Pope John Paul II regarding the Medjugorje phenomenon. According to Bishop Peric, the bishop overseeing Medjugorje, some of these statements were denied. In 1998 Joseph Ratzinger, later Pope Benedict XVI, as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, when presented the list of statements collected by Sister Emmanuel Maillard, responded, “I can only say that the statements about Medjugorje attributed to the Holy Father and me are mere fabrications." ("frei erfunden")[54][55] In 1988 other claims supportive of the Medjugorje phenomenon were attributed not just to Pope, but other Church officials, with none of them being proved as authentic according to Peric.[56] Also according to Peric, one such claim of Bishop Pavol Hnilica's was denied by the Vatican's Secretariate of State.[57]

Both Bishop of Mostar Pavao Zanic and his successor Ratko Peric expressed serious reservations concerning the alleged apparitions. According to Peric, both Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI supported the judgments of the local bishops.[58] The pope's private secretary Stanisław Dziwisz stated that the Pope had entrusted the whole matter to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and thereafter maintained "a prudent distance."[59]

However, according to Why He is a Saint, the book making the case for his canonization, Pope John Paul II allegedly privately confided to others that he felt the events at Medjugorje were genuine. The author, Slawomir Oder, was appointed the postulator by Cardinal Camillo Ruini on May 13, 2005.[60] The "claims that the late Pope John Paul II strongly supported Medjugorje in various private statements; the Vatican has never confirmed those statements."[61]

On 25 March 1984, Bishop Pavol Hnilica traveled to Russia to be there when Pope John Paul II consecrated Russia and the whole world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. When Hnilica returned to Rome, Pope John Paul II invited him to a private lunch and they shared a three-hour lunch talking about the consecration. During that meeting the Pope allegedly said that, "Medjugorje is the continuation and it is the completion of Fatima!"[62][63][64] and "If I were not the Pope, I would probably have visited Medjugorje by now."[51] According to Peric, Hnilica was a member of the Secretariate of the "Queen of Peace Committee", along with other prominent supporters of the Medjugorje phenomenon, including Jozo Zovko and Slavko Barbarić.[65]

According to Oder, Monsignor Murilo Sebastiao Ramos Krieger, Archbishop of Florianopolis in Brazil, was traveling on a pilgrimage to Medjugorje for a fourth time when Pope John Paul II confided and confirmed to him that "Medjugorje is the spiritual center for the world!"[63] Oder also said that Cardinal Frantisek Tomasek, Archbishop Emeritus of Prague heard Pope John Paul II state that if he wasn't pope, he would have liked to have been in Medjugorje helping with the pilgrimages.[63]

In 1987, Mirjana Dragicevic, one of the seers, said that Pope John Paul II confided to her, "If I weren't pope, I would already be in Medjugorje confessing."[63] Cardinal Dziwisz said, "I can exclude it in the strongest terms. They say that one of the visionaries, though it isn’t clear if it was Mirjana or Vicka, came one day to the general audience and greeted the Pope as he passed. But he said nothing to her. Otherwise he would have remembered. Besides, the Pope had not even realized who it was."[59]

Oder also says that on 5 August 1988, Monsignor Michael David Pfeifer wrote in a pastoral letter to the diocese, "During my visit ad limina with the bishops of Texas, in a private conversation with the Holy Father, I asked him what he thought about Medjugorje. The pope spoke of it in very favorable terms and said, ‘To say that nothing is happening in Medjurgorje means denying the living and praying testimony of thousands of people who have been there.'"[63]

According to Jozo Zovko, the Franciscan Pastor during the alleged apparitions on June 17, 1992, met with John Paul II in Rome during the wars in former Yugoslavia. The pope said among other things, "I give you my blessing. Take courage I am with you. Tell Medjugorje I am with you. Protect Medjugorje. Protect Our Lady's messages.”[66]

Oder further says that Marek and Zofia Skwarnicki, friends of Pope John Paul II, made available letters he wrote to them “abounding in specific references to Medjugorje.” He wrote on the back of a picture of a saint: "I thank Zofia for everything concerning Medjugorje. I too go there every day in prayer: I am united with all who are praying there and who receive the call to prayer from there. Today we better understand the summons."[63]

During a meeting with the Superior General of the Franciscan Order, the Holy Father asked: "All around Medjugorje bombs have been falling, and yet Medjugorje itself was never damaged. Is this not perhaps a miracle of God?"[51]

Pope Benedict XVIEdit

 
Pope Benedict XVI

Like Pope John Paul II, many affirmative statements regarding Medjugorje were attributed to Pope Benedict XVI while he was still a cardinal, which he dismissed as "mere fabrications.”[54][55]

Bishop Peric visited Rome in 2006 and reported that in his discussion with Pope Benedict XVI regarding the Medjugorje phenomenon, the pope said, "We at the congregation always asked ourselves how can any believer accept as authentic apparitions that occur every day and for so many years?"[67]

In 2009, Pope Benedict defrocked Tomislav Vlašić, who was a former spiritual director of the alleged seers.[68] In August 1984, Vlašić was replaced by Franciscan friar Slavko Barbarić[69]

The Ruini Commission: 2010–2014Edit

 
Cardinal Camillo Ruini headed the commission established by Pope Benedict XVI in 2010

In 1991 the country of Yugoslavia was dissolved, and the constituent republics declared their independence. On 17 March 2010, the Holy See announced that, at the request of the bishops of Bosnia and Herzegovina, it had established a commission, headed by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, to examine the Medjugorje phenomenon.[70][71] Other prominent members of the commission included Cardinals Jozef Tomko, Vinko Puljić, Josip Bozanić, Julián Herranz and Angelo Amato, as well as psychologists, theologians, mariologists, and canonists. The commission was established to "collect and examine all the material,” and publish a "detailed report" based on its findings.[72] It was tasked to evaluate the alleged apparitions and to make appropriate pastoral recommendations for those pilgrims who continued to go to Medjugorje despite the ban on official pilgrimages. The Commission was active until 17 January 2014.

The Ruini Commission made a distinction between the first appearances from 24 June 1981 until 3 July 1981, with reportedly 13 votes in favor of those apparitions being of "supernatural" origin, one vote against, and an expert with a suspensive vote. Regarding the rest of the apparitions, from July 1981 onwards, the Commission found them to be influenced by heavy interference caused by the conflict between the Franciscans and the diocese over the redistribution of parishes. The Commission deemed later visions to be "pre-announced and programmed,” and they continued despite the seers stating they would end.[72]

Regarding the pastoral fruits of Medjugorje, the Commission voted in two phases. In the first phase, they disregarded the behavior of the seers and voted six in favor of the positive outcome (including three experts), seven stating they are mixed (including three experts) with most being positive, and the other three experts stating the fruits are a mix of positive and negative. In the second phase, taking into consideration the behavior of the seers, twelve members (including four experts) stated that they could not express their opinion, and the other two members voted against the supernatural origin of the phenomenon.[72]

The Ruini Report was completed in 2014,[73] and was viewed with some reservations by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which expressed doubts regarding the apparitions.[72] Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, who headed the Congregation at the time, said in April 2017 regarding Medjugorje, that "pastoral questions" cannot be separated "from questions of the authenticity of apparitions.”[74]

Pope FrancisEdit

 
Pope Francis

In a May 2017 interview, Pope Francis commented on the findings of the commission headed by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, stating that the report said of the initial apparitions that they "need to continue being studied" and expressed doubts in the later apparitions. He also expressed his own suspicion towards the apparitions saying he prefers "the Madonna as Mother, our Mother, and not a woman who's the head of the telegraphic office, who sends a message every day.”[72][75]

The Pope noted that there are people who go there, convert, find God and their lives change. He said that this is a spiritual and pastoral fact that cannot be denied.[76]

Pastoral evaluationEdit

In February 2017 Pope Francis named Polish Archbishop Henryk Hoser as a special envoy to "acquire more in-depth knowledge of the pastoral situation in Medjugorje" and “above all, the needs of the faithful who come to pilgrimage” to “suggest any pastoral initiatives for the future.”[77][78]

In 2017, around two million people from more around eighty countries from all over the world visited Medjugorje.[79] The Archbishop reported his findings to the Pope in the summer of 2017.[80]

On 31 May 2018, Pope Francis nominated Archbishop Hoser a second time “as special apostolic visitor for the parish of Medjugorje” with the mandate lasting for “an undefined period..." at the discretion of the Pope. Archbishop Hoser was appointed by Pope Francis to evaluate the quality of pastoral care people were receiving at Medjugorje.[77] The Ruini Commission had recommended that the town's parish Church of St. James be made a pontifical shrine with Vatican oversight. From a pastoral perspective, this would both recognize the devotion of those who travel to Medjugorje and "ensure that 'a pastor and not a travel agency' is in charge of what happens there".[81]

According to Marshall Connolly of the media company California Network, what Hoser witnessed convinced the archbishop that something genuine has happened. Hoser told the Polish Catholic news agency, KAI, "All indications are that the revelations will be recognized, perhaps even this year." He added, "Specifically, I think it is possible to recognize the authenticity of the first apparitions as proposed by the Ruini commission."[82]

Authorization of official pilgrimagesEdit

On May 12, 2019, Pope Francis authorized pilgrimages to Medjugorje considering the "considerable flow of people who go to Medjugorje and the abundant fruits of grace that have sprung from it." While pilgrimages can now be officially organized by dioceses and parishes, the permission did not address still outstanding doctrinal questions relating to the authenticity of the alleged visions.[83] As a result, the Apostolic Visitor "will have greater facility—together with the bishops of these places—of establishing relations with the priests who organize these pilgrimages” to ensure that they are “sound and well prepared."[84] The first sanctioned event was the Thirtieth Annual Youth Festival, which took place from August 1–6, 2019. During the pilgrimage, approximately 50,000 young Catholics from all over the world took part.[85]

Biographies of the assumed seersEdit

According to Mirjana Dragičević Soldo said that every seer has a special mission. She was given those who do not know the love of God, Vicka Ivanković and Jakov Čolo for the sick, Ivan Dragičević for the young and the priests, Marija Pavlović for the souls in purgatory, and Ivanka Ivanković for families.[86]

Ivanka IvankovićEdit

Ivanka Ivanković was born in Bijakovići in 1966. At the time of the alleged apparitions, she was 14. Her mother had died in May of 1966 that year. She was the first to see the apparition. She, like Ivan Dragičević and Vicka Dragičević, says that the Gospa told her biography between January and May 1983. She says to have had regular apparitions until May 7, 1985 and since then the apparitions occur once a year on the anniversary of her first apparition, June 24, 1981.[87] She claims all ten secrets were given to her by Gospa.[87][88]

She is married to Rajko Elez with whom she has three children. Rajko Elez is one of six sons who owns a local restaurant.[87] They live in Međugorje.[87][88]

Mirjana Dragičević SoldoEdit

Mirjana Dragičević Soldo was born on 1965, in Sarajevo. She was 15 at the time of the alleged apparitions. She lived in Sarajevo for some time, where she finished her education. She was the second person to see the Blessed Mother. She said she had regular apparitions between 24 June 1981, and 25 December 1982. She was given all ten secrets, which are intended "for humanity in general, for the world, then for Međugorje, for Yugoslavia, and some other areas and about the sign". According to Mirjana, the Gospa left her "a gift" that she could see the Gospa on her birthday.[89] When the visions stopped, she became depressed and prayed for the apparition to see her again. Then Mirjana said that beginning 2 August 1987, on the second of the month, "I hear our Lady's voice in me, and sometimes I see her, and I pray with her for the unbelievers". Then since 2 January 1997, this experience was no longer exclusively private and it became a meeting of prayer also open to believers with a time of 10-11 am.[89]

Soldo has been married to Marko Soldo, the nephew of the late Franciscan Father Slavko Barbaric, since 1989 and they have two children. They live in Međugorje,[87] where they own a hotel.[90] Soldo wrote her autobiography titled Moje srce će pobijediti (“My Heart will Triumph”) published in 2016.[90]

On March 18, 2020 Soldo announced that the Blessed Mother would no longer appear to her on the second of each month.[91][92]

Marija Pavlović LunettiEdit

 
Marija Pavlović Lunetti

Marija Pavlović Lunetti was born on April 1, 1965, in Bijakovići near Međugorje.[87] She finished secondary school in Mostar. She was 16 at the time of the alleged apparitions of Our Lady, whom she first saw on June 25, 1981.[86] She says she receives daily apparitions, was given nine secrets from the Gospa and receives a message on the 25th of each month for the entire world. These messages were first made public by the Franciscans overseeing the visionaries, Tomislav Vlašić, then after him Slavko Barbarić. She was given the special mission to pray for the souls in purgatory.[86] She is married to Italian Paolo Lunetti with whom she has four children.[87] Even though she lives most of the year in Milan, Italy,[93] she visits Medjugorje often. [87] She was asked by an Italian journalist, why she didn't become a nun, to which she replied that even though she felt drawn to the monastery, she realized that her vocation is about witnessing what she saw and felt. She said that she will be able to seek the way of holiness outside the monastery.[86]

Vicka Ivanković MijatovicEdit

Vicka Ivanković Mijatovic is the oldest of the alleged seers, born in 1964, in Bijakovići, a village near Međugorje. She was 16 at the time of the alleged apparitions. She said she had daily apparitions, and on occasion two, three, four or five times a day.[87] Vicka said that the Gospa dictated to her the details of her life on earth from January 1983 to April 1985. It filled up three notebooks.[87][94] She said she prayed and talked with Our Lady and was given nine secrets. Her prayer mission, given by the Blessed Virgin Mary, is to pray for the sick. Vicka says that her daily apparitions have not yet stopped.[86]

Regarding her visions, Vicka Ivanković Mijatovic once stated:

Before, I prayed from pure habit. Now I've turned completely to prayer. I commit my life completely to God. I feel sorry for those who do not believe in God, because Our Lady wants no one to be lost. We can help each other find the right way to God. It's up to the people to obey the messages and be converted. Great things are happening here – Our Lady is among us. She wishes to attract everyone to Her Son. That's the reason She has been coming so long and so often. Here everyone feels the nearness and the love of God. As role model and example, Gospa (Mary) began, in January 1983, to tell me Her life story, which took over two years.[95]

She married Marijo Mijatović in 2002[94] and they have two children.[87] The Mijatovićs live in a wall enclosed villa in Krehin Gradac near Medjugorje.[96]

Ivan DragičevićEdit

Ivan Dragičević was born in Mostar on May 25, 1965. He was 15 at the time of the alleged apparitions. After graduating from elementary school, he enrolled in a number of schools including a seminary, while at the same time having almost daily apparitions, and in the end was not sufficiently interested in school and returned home in January 1983.[97] He said, like Vicka Dragičević, that the Gospa dictated her autobiography to him from December 1982 to May 1983.[97]

Dragičević married Laureen Murphy, a former Miss Massachusetts, in 1994. They have four children and live in Boston for six months and then reside the other half the year in the parish of Medjugorje.[98][97]

In October 2013, Archbishop Gerhard Müller of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith wanted the U.S. bishops to be aware that Dragicevic was scheduled to give presentations at parishes across the country and was anticipated to have more apparitions during these talks. The Apostolic Nunciature to the United States advised the bishops that the 1991 Zadar declaration that Catholics, whether clergy or laypeople, "are not permitted to participate in meetings, conferences or public celebrations during which the credibility of such apparitions would be taken for granted".[99] The letter was sent to every diocese in the U.S. as the CDF determined that the judgment of the Yugoslavian bishops which precluded such gatherings remained in force.[100]

Jakov ČoloEdit

 
Jakov Čolo

Jakov Čolo was born in Bijakovići on March 6, 1971. His father abandoned the family when he was eight years old and his mother suffering from alcoholism died when he was twelve.[87] He was 10 at the time of the alleged apparitions.He claimed to have had daily apparitions from June 25, 1981, to September 12, 1998. As of then, he claims that he has one apparition a year on Christmas Day. He claims that Gospa told him the tenth secret.[101]

He married Annalisa Barozzi, an Italian, in 1993. They have three children and live in Međugorje.[101]

Other alleged seersEdit

Other seers include the former parson of Medjugorje Jozo Zovko who had a vision of Our Lady in a church on 11 April 1983.[citation needed]

Jelena Vasilj, a young woman from Medjugorje, allegedly also had apparitions of Our Lady on 24 May 1983.[102]

Controversial apparitions and messagesEdit

There are several apparitions and messages from the alleged Madonna, that caused controversy. These visions and messages were recorded by Vicka's diaries.

The Chronicle of Apparitions and Vicka's diariesEdit

Fr. Tomislav Vlašić became a spiritual guide of the seers and was writing the Chronicle of Apparitions (Kronika ukazanja).[103] The Chronicle covers the period from 11 August 1981 to 15 October 1983. The document is written to give the impression of immediacy, using terms such as “same scene as yesterday” or “tonight” and “tonight”. However, Nikola Bulat, a member of the commission that examined the apparitions, concluded that the Chronicle wasn't written daily as it seems.[104] Under the number dates, events that occurred later were recorded.[105] The introduction of the Chronicle was written only on 25 February 1982, so Bulat concludes that it is possible that Vlašić started writing the Chronicle only then, eight months after the apparitions or in October 1981 at its best.[106]

The commission also received three of Vicka's four diaries. The first diary was written by Vicka's sister Ana, and encompasses the period from 24 June 1981 to 6 September 1981.[107] Some of the problematic aspects the commission found with this diary is that Vicka never saw it nor wrote it, and it contains information Vicka claimed to have never told her sister.[108]

The second diary was largely copied from Vlašić's Chronicle, and covers the period from 12 October 1981 to 14 December 1981. The entry for 18 October 1981 was written twice, with different content. It contains two handwritings, none of which is Vicka's. Vicka told the commission that this diary was also written by her sister.[109]

Vicka's third diary is the only one she definitively wrote. It includes the period between 6 February 1982 to 25 March 1982. It is not reliable as the dates recorded do not correspond to the days of the week, while only the first eight days are correctly written. For example, the day of Ash Wednesday is noted as Good Friday. It also contains songs and quotes unrelated to the apparitions, and has poor grammar and content.[110]

The question of Vicka's fourth, unexamined diary remains unresolved. Vicka claimed in a letter to Bishop Pavao that she has been writing it since the beginning of the apparitions, and when discussing it a second time she claimed she never had it.[111] Similarly, Fr. Vlašić claimed that the fourth diary exists, and then later swore by the Cross that he never held it in his hands.[112]

Apparitions of Jozo ZovkoEdit

In October 1981, the parson of the Parish of Medjugorje Jozo Zovko was sentenced to three and a half years in prison for disrespecting the "People's Revolution" in his sermon on 11 July 1981. In the sermon, Zovko said that the people should be careful not to be seduced by the "false teaching and false teachers", which the communist authorities recognised as referring to themselves, however, Zovko defended his statement claiming it was referring to Bishop Pavao Žanić.[113]

The seers said to have had visions of Zovko who was under trial at the time. Jakov Čolo and Vicka Ivanković had the first apparition of Zovko on 19 October 1981. While they prayed, they saw Zovko who was smiling with the Madonna. Zovko "tells them not to be afraid for him, that everything was well."[114][115]

The Madonna appeared to Jakov and Vicka on 21 October 1981. She told them not to worry about Zovko "because he's a saint", and that "the sentence will not be pronounced this evening. Do not be afraid, he will not be condemned to a severe punishment..."[114]

Zovko himself allegedly had the apparition of Our Lady of Medjugorje on 11 April 1983.[citation needed]

Economic impactEdit

Although the Yugoslav authorities initially regarded the events as little more than a conspiracy on the part of Bosnian Croat nationalists, gradually "the cash-strapped Yugoslav authorities realized the commercial potential of Medjugorje."[23]

Journalist Inés San Martin described Medugorje as "barely more than a village in 1981, [that] has since grown to become one big hotel, with restaurants and religious shops being the only commercial activity at hand. Some of its detractor say that it's a tourist trap."[116]

Paolo Apolito writes that during the 1980s, Medjugorje was visited by a million pilgrimages on average. The number of visits continued after the end of Bosnian War in 1995.[117] According to author Chris Maunder, during the Bosnian War, profits from Medjugorje were channeled to fund the war efforts of the Croatian Republic of Herzeg-Bosnia and its military, the Croatian Defence Council. On one occasion, a businessman from the United Kingdom used the money he apparently collected for orphans to fund the Croat military.[118] Serbs and Muslims who saw the Gospa as a symbol of extreme Croat nationalism called her the "Ustasha Virgin".[23]

In 1997, the Hercegovačka Banka was founded "by several private companies and the Franciscan order, which controls the religious shrine in Medjugorje, a major source of income, both from pilgrims and from donations by Croats living abroad."[119] Located in Mostar, the bank has branches in several towns. In 2001, the bank was investigated for possible ties to Bosnian Croat separatists attempting to forge an independent mini-state in Croat areas of Bosnia. Tomislav Pervan, OFM was a member of the bank board of supervisors, as well as former officers of the Croatian Defence Council.[120] The bank was subsequently liquidated.

Henryk Hoser, the apostolic visitator in Medjugorje, stated in July 2018 that the mafia had penetrated the pilgrimage site, specifically the Neapolitan mafia – the Camorra. According to the Neapolitan newspaper Il Mattino in Naples, magistrates are investigating Camorra ties to a pilgrimage business, three hotels, guide services, and souvenir vendors in Medjugorje.[121]

Effects of the Coronavirus to the town of MedjugorjeEdit

On March 20, 2020 the Associated Press presented a video of the empty streets in Medjugorje, writing that the locals now "fear international and Europe wide travel restrictions and anxiety about the coronavirus pandemic will lead to a dramatic fall in visitors..." .[122]

On June 25, 2020 Reuters reported that the travel restrictions had caused a marked decrease in pilgrimages, down from over 100,000 per year, along with a loss in revenue for local businesses.[123]

Croat nationalismEdit

Medjugorje is a town located in Bosnia and Herzegovina, about 20 km (12 mi) east of the border with Croatia in an overwhelmingly ethnically Croatian area.[124] Perhaps the most cynical explanation of the Medjugorje phenomemom suggests that the Croatians, virtually all of them baptized Catholics, have used it for political and national ends. Professot Chris Merrill noted, "Whether the apparitions actually happened or not, they have become part of the building of a national identity."[125]

The Herzegovina Franciscans favored a separate Croat state over an independent Bosnia and Herzegovina and supported the Croatian Nationalists fighting the Bozniak Muslims.[126] The end of the Bosnian War did not end calls for Croatian autonomy in western Bosnia. Henning Philipp, a spokesperson for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said that the creation of a Croatian entity in Bosnia was not in accordance with the Dayton Agreement that ended the war.[124] In April 2001, the NATO-led Stabilisation Force closed and searched local branches of the Hercegovačka banka ("Herzegovina Bank"), through which a large part of the currency transactions in Herzegovina, including international donations intended for Međugorje, were carried out, on suspicion of white-collar crime and funneling money to the ultra-nationalist party, the Croat Democratic Union (HDZ).[124] The Franciscan Province responsible for St. James parish was a shareholder of the bank.[127][128]

With the closure of the bank, the HDZ was even more concerned with protecting its political and economic base around the lucrative Medjugorje site, because of the millions of dollars it brings in.[124]

SkepticismEdit

Two former bishops of the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, Pavao Žanić and Ratko Perić, have stated that they believe that the apparitions are a hoax.[129][130][131] Zanic, in the beginning, was sympathetic to the young visionaries, but subsequently changed his mind and became the main critic and opponent of the Medjugorje apparitions.[51]

Marian expert Donal Foley says that, “sadly, the only rational conclusion about Medjugorje is that it has turned out to be a vast, if captivating, religious illusion”.[132] Foley attributed the popularity of the Medjugorje cult to the fact that Medjugorje may appeal to Catholics confused by changes after the Second Vatican Council.

Critics such as Catholic author E. Michael Jones, consider the apparitions to be a hoax, and have stated that the reports of mysterious lights on the hill could easily be explained by illusions produced by atmospheric conditions, or fires that were lit by local youths.[133][134]

Raymond Eve, a professor of sociology, in the Skeptical Inquirer has written:

I acknowledge that the teenagers' initial encounters with the Virgin may well have been caused by personal factors. For example, Ivanka, who was the first to perceive a visitation, had just lost her natural mother. The perception of apparitional experiences spread rapidly among her intimate peer group. ...The region's tension and anxiety likely exacerbated this contagion process and the need to believe among the youthful protagonists.[66]

Skeptical investigator Joe Nickell has noted that there are a number of reasons for doubting the authenticity of the apparitions such as contradictions in the stories. For example, on the first sighting, the teenagers claimed they had visited Podbrdo Hill to smoke. They later retracted this, claiming they had gone to the hill to pick flowers. According to Nickell there is also a problem of the "embarrassingly illiterate" nature of the messages.[133]

Locations of alleged visions outside of MedjugorjeEdit

Medjugorje is where the visions began in 1981 and still are occurring. Some visionaries when traveling had visions in other locations.

See alsoEdit

FootnotesEdit

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  101. ^ a b Kutleša, Dražen, ed. (2001). Ogledalo pravde [Mirror of Justice] (PDF) (in Croatian). Mostar: Biskupski ordinarijat Mostar (Bishop's Ordinariate Mostar). p. 37.
  102. ^ Kutleša, Dražen, ed. (2001). Ogledalo pravde [Mirror of Justice] (PDF) (in Croatian). Mostar: Biskupski ordinarijat Mostar (Bishop's Ordinariate Mostar). p. 122.
  103. ^ Bulat 2006, p. 20.
  104. ^ Bulat 2006, p. 23.
  105. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 24–25: "A similar record was made on January 20: 'Five children had a vision of the Mother of God this evening as well.' The visionaries also asked the question: 'What will Fr. Ivica Vego and Fr. Ivan Prusina do now that they have been expelled?' These are two disobedient chaplains who were suspended, ie they were forbidden to perform priestly duties and were dismissed from the Order of the OFM. Our Lady replied: 'They are not guilty. The bishop was hasty in his decision. Let them stay.' This fact interests us here only because the two mentioned chaplains were dismissed from the Order only on 29 January 1982. The act of dismissal from the OFM Order of the two mentioned chaplains was recorded in the Chronicle 9 days before they were dismissed. This clearly tells us that the wording: 'Five children and this evening ...', ie 20 January is not correct, because it did not happen that evening nor could it have been written that evening when the chaplains were fired 9 days later."
  106. ^ Bulat 2006, p. 26.
  107. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 34–35.
  108. ^ Bulat 2006, p. 35: "It is interesting what Vicka said in a conversation with Fr. Janko Bubalo when he asked her about the "sign":
    Janko: - In a notebook (which they call yours) it says that Our Lady had a smile on 26 October 1981, she said she was somehow surprised that you didn't ask her for a sign anymore, but that she will surely leave it to you, that you are not afraid of anything...
    Vicka: - That's good. But I don't think it was her first promise that she would really leave a sign to us.
    Janko: - This is true because, in a small notebook, which was recorded by your sister Ana (it is the manuscript of the First Diary), it was recorded three times that Our Lady told you at the end of August that she would leave her sign 'soon', and here, it dragged on...
    Vicka: - I don't know that. I never read that notebook, and I never told Ana that. Someone else must have said that
    Janko: - I think Jakov and Ivanka told her that..."
  109. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 40–48.
  110. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 48–50.
  111. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 61–62: "In the first place comes the recognition of Vicka herself. In the diaries we spoken of above (First, Second and Third) there is not a single excerpt brought by Fr. Grafenauer to Msgr. Žanić. When Bishop Žanić reproduced Fr. Grafenauer's excerpts and distributed them to some bishops, he received a letter from the seer Vicka Ivanković, dated 7 May 1983, in which she wrote:
    'These days, I learned that they are multiplying excerpts from my diary, which I write exclusively for myself from the very beginning of the apparition of Bl. Virgin Mary on Crnica in the parish of Medjugorje. ... I hereby inform my Father Bishop that the public is aware that anything that spreads and multiplies in any way as the text of my diary is a severe indiscretion and violation of my basic rights to a private diary.' [...]
    That such a diary existed, Vicka confirmed in an interview with three members of the Commission (Dogan, Samac and the undersigned) on 11 October 1984 in Mostar. Then I showed Vicka a copy of her letter to the bishop dated 7 May 1983, read it aloud, and finally asked her,
    "It says here that you have been writing a diary since the beginning of the apparition."
    Vicka: "I am!"
    Bulat: "And that Diary exists?
    Vicka: "It exists!" (Let's not forget that this is a Diary containing "Our Lady's messages" to the chaplains) (...)
    Bulat: "Do you really own that Diary as a whole?"
    Vicka: "Yes!" [...]
    Dogan: "Did Father Vlašić see that Diary?"
    Vicka: "Which one? He saw everything. The same Diary, he saw everything, only he did not see the biography (Our Lady's biography). I give all the diaries to everyone. Whoever wants can look at them. But I don't have any hidden Diary!"
  112. ^ Bulat 2006, pp. 64–65: Msgr. Žanić, convinced that the excerpts brought to him by Fr. Grafenauer from Vicka's Diary, asked Fr. Tomislav Vlašić on 9 February 1983 why they hid the Diary from the bishop and why they did not publish the messages that "Our Lady" said about the chaplains.
    Vlašić replied: "Well, you publish it!" "He did not say that the excerpts brought by Fr. Grafenauer were not from the Diary or that the Diary did not exist," Bishop Žanić notes.
    However, when the bishop, after several unsuccessful written requests, went to Medjugorje in person on 16 November 1983 to request the Chronicle and the diary, Father Vlašić claimed that the diary did not exist "and that he could swear on the cross that he had never had it in his hands". On 14 December 1983, Fr. Tomislav Vlašić spoke again with the bishop in Mostar about the "hidden" diary: on that occasion, he swore on the cross that he did not have in his hand the diary spoken of by the bishop."
  113. ^ Kutleša, Dražen, ed. (2001). Ogledalo pravde [Mirror of Justice] (PDF) (in Croatian). Mostar: Biskupski ordinarijat Mostar (Bishop's Ordinariate Mostar). p. 51.
  114. ^ a b Laurentin / Lejeune, Rene / Rene (1988). Messages and Teachings of Mary of Medjugorje. Mostar: The Riehle Foundation. pp. 167–170.
  115. ^ Kutleša 2001, pp. 112–113. sfn error: multiple targets (9×): CITEREFKutleša2001 (help)
  116. ^ San Martin, Inés. "As debate rages over Medjugorje, maybe a place of prayer is enough", Crux, September 23, 2016
  117. ^ Apolito 2005, pp. 3–4.
  118. ^ Maunder 2016, p. 166. sfn error: multiple targets (3×): CITEREFMaunder2016 (help)
  119. ^ "Authorities seize 'corrupt' Bosnian bank", The Guardian, April 6, 2001
  120. ^ Grandits, Hannes. "The Power of “Armchair” Politicians: Ethnic Loyalty and Political Factionalism among Herzegovinian Croats", The New Bosnian Mosaic. Identities, Memories and Moral Claims, (X. Bougarel, G. Duijzings, E. Helms, eds.), Routledge, New York, 2016, p. 113
  121. ^ "Hoser, 'Medjugorje target of the Mafia'", La Stamoa, July 10, 2018
  122. ^ "Virus deters Catholic pilgrims from Medjugorje". AP Archive. March 15, 2020. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  123. ^ Sito-Sucic, Daria (2020-06-25). "Coronavirus keeps pilgrims away from Bosnian shrine". Reuters. Retrieved 2020-10-06.
  124. ^ a b c d Farnam, Arie. "Medjugorje's bellicose message", The Christian Science Monitor, July 31, 2001
  125. ^ Rourke, Mary. "Mysticism & Miracles", The Los Angeles Times", May 26, 1997
  126. ^ Budde, Michael L., "The Croatian Catholic Nationalism and the Case of Medjugorje", Beyond the Borders of Baptism: Catholicity, Allegiances, and Lived Identities United States, Cascade Books, 2016. p. 110 ISBN 9781498204736
  127. ^ East European Constitutional Review Archived 2008-08-21 at the Wayback Machine, New York University, 2001.
  128. ^ SFOR supports HR's actions on Hercegovacka Banka nato.int, 18 April 2001, accessed 6 July 2020
  129. ^ "Local Bishop: Medjugorje Apparitions Are Not Credible". www.total-croatia-news.com.
  130. ^ "Local bishop: 'The Madonna has not appeared in Medjugorje'". www.catholicnewsagency.com.
  131. ^ "The Truth About Medjugorje—Donal Foley Part I". January 29, 2018.
  132. ^ "Medjugorje's Mystery", Catholic News Service, June 25, 2006
  133. ^ a b Nickell, Joe. (1993). Looking for a Miracle: Weeping Icons, Relics, Stigmata, Visions & Healing Cures. Prometheus Books. pp. 190-194. ISBN 1-57392-680-9
  134. ^ Coffin, Patrick (September 23, 2019). "147: The Medjugorje Deception—Dr. E. Michael Jones".
  135. ^ a b c d e f g h Kutleša 2001, p. 49. sfn error: multiple targets (9×): CITEREFKutleša2001 (help)
  136. ^ a b Kutleša 2001, pp. 33–35. sfn error: multiple targets (9×): CITEREFKutleša2001 (help)
  137. ^ Kutleša 2001, pp. 33–34. sfn error: multiple targets (9×): CITEREFKutleša2001 (help)
  138. ^ Garrison (a) 2012.
  139. ^ a b Garrison (b) 2012.
  140. ^ Kutleša 2001, p. 31. sfn error: multiple targets (9×): CITEREFKutleša2001 (help)

ReferencesEdit

BooksEdit

  • Adriano, Pino; Cingolani, Giorgio (2018). Nationalism and Terror: Ante Pavelić and Ustasha Terrorism from Fascism to the Cold War. Budapest: Central European University Press. ISBN 9789633862063.
  • Belaj, Marijana (2012). Milijuni na putu - Antropologija hodočašća i sveto tlo Međugorja [The millions of a way - The Anthropology of pilgrimage and the holy ground of Medjugorje] (in Croatian). Zagreb: Jasenski i Turk. ISBN 9789532225884.
  • Bulat, Nikola (2006). Istina će vas osloboditi [The Truth will set you free] (in Croatian). Mostar: Biskupski ordinarijat Mostar.
  • Emmanuel, Sister (1997). Medjugorje, the 90's - The Triumph of the Heart. Goleta, CA: Queenship Publishing Company. pp. 71–72. ISBN 978-1-7359106-0-4.
  • Greer, Joanne Marie; Moberg, David O. (2001). Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion. 10. BRILL. ISBN 9780762304837.
  • Herrero, Juan A. (1999). "Medjugorje: Ecclesiastical Conflict, Theological Controversy, Ethnic Division". In Joanne M. Greer, David O. Moberg (ed.). Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion. Stamford, Connecticut: JAI Press. ISBN 0762304839.
  • Kutleša, Dražen (2001). Ogledalo pravde [Mirror of Justice] (in Croatian). Mostar: Biskupski ordinarijat Mostar.
  • Margry, Peter Jan (2019). "The Global Network of Deviant Revelatory Marian Movements". In Maunder, Chris (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of Mary. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780192511140.
  • Maunder, Chris (2016). Our Lady of the Nations: Apparitions of Mary in 20th-Century Catholic Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198718383.
  • Pandžić, Bazilije (2001). Hercegovački franjevci – sedam stoljeća s narodom [Herzegovinian Franciscans – seven centuries with the people] (in Croatian). Mostar–Zagreb: ZIRAL.
  • Pavičić, Darko (2019). Međugorje: prvih sedam dana: cijela istina o ukazanjima od 24. lipnja do 3. srpnja 1981 [Medjugorje: the first seven apparitions: the whole truth on apparitions from 24 June to 3 July 1981] (in Croatian). Zagreb: Pavičić izdavaštvo i publicistika. ISBN 9789534862001.
  • Perica, Vjekoslav (2002). Balkan Idols: Religion and Nationalism in Yugoslav States. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Perić, Marko (1986). "Život i rad mostarsko-duvanjskih i trebinjsko-mrkanskih biskupa u zadnjih 100 godina" [The life and work of the bishops of Mostar-Duvno and Trebinje-Mrkan in the last 100 years]. In Babić, Petar; Zovkić, Mato (eds.). Katolička crkva u Bosni i Hercegovini u XIX i XX stoljeću: povijesno-teološki simpozij prigodom stogodišnjice ponovne uspostave redovite hijerarhije u Bosni i Hercegovini [The Catholic Church in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the 19th and 20th centuries: A historical-theological symposium on the occasion of the centenary of the restoration of the regular hierarchy in Bosnia and Herzegovina] (in Croatian). Sarajevo: Vrhbosanska visoka teološka škola.
  • Weible, Wayne (1989). Medjugorje The Message. Paraclete Press. ISBN 1-55725-009-X.
  • Žanić, Pavao (1990). La verita su Medjugorje [The truth about Medjugorje] (in Italian). Mostar: Diocese of Mostar-Duvno.
  • Soldo, Mirjana (2016). My Heart Will Triumph. Catholic Shop Publishing. ISBN 978-0-9978906-0-0.

Journals and magazinesEdit

  • Czernin, Marie (2004). "Medjugorje and Pope John Paul II – An Interview with Bishop Hnilica". Germany: Politik und Religion (PUR). Cite magazine requires |magazine= (help)
  • Jolić, Robert (2013). "Fabrications on Medjugorje: on Mart Bax' Research". Studia ethnologica Croatica. 25: 309–328.
  • Zovkić, Mato (1993). "Problematični elementi u fenomenu Međugorja" [The problematic elements in the Medjugorje phenomenon]. Bogoslovska Smotra (in Croatian). 63 (1–2): 76–87.

News articlesEdit

WebsitesEdit

External linksEdit