Medjugorje is a fraud (doo dah! doo dah!).

Medjugorje is a fraud (doo dah! doo dah!). May 8, 2013

No. Seriously. Go here for somebody who has done their homework. And stick with what the local bishop says:

Bishop Peric: From his homily in 2006 at the Church in Medjugorje:

“Therefore I responsibly call upon those who claim themselves to be “seers”, as well as those persons behind the “messages”, to demonstrate ecclesiastical obedience and to cease with these public manifestations and messages in this parish. In this fashion they shall show their necessary adherence to the Church, by neither placing private “apparitions” nor private sayings before the official position of the Church. Our faith is a serious and responsible matter. The Church is also a serious and responsible institution!”

That means every act of publicity by the “seers” since this homily has been one of defiance of the Church since 2006.

What True Believers will tell you is “Rome has taken it out of the hands of the local bishops (who are resisting the Holy Spirit by refusing to recognize The Truth[TM]”. In reality, the local bishops *wanted* Rome to take up the case for the simple reason that these frauds have managed to get enough True Believers in their court who refuse to listen to reason. After the investigation, Rome is, I am morally certain, simply going to ratify what the local ordinaries and all the local bishops have said for two decades: Mary is not appearing at Medjugorje. Meanwhile, those good fruits just keep coming.

Another “fruit”, fraudulent “seer” Ivan, by the way, lives with his trophy wife in an $800,000 home that he paid for in a year with proceeds from his highly lucrative pilgrimages to Medjugorje.

And even if, mirabile dictu, Rome approves it, you don’t have to buy it.

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Fabio Paolo Barbieri

    Somebody should put a muzzle and lead on Cardinal Schoenborn. He seems to have an infallible talent for saying and doing the most damaging thing he can. His journey to Medjugorje goes with the appalling blasphemous “artwork” exhibited in a Cathedral building and with dozens of other surrenders in every direction. The man is a serial yielder.

  • Dymphna

    We’ve got a local “apparition” here that falls in a very similar category–Bishop has forbid it, yet it goes on and the books continue to be sold.

  • jrg

    “Of course, there is a (remote) chance I will be wrong and, if I am, I will honor the Church’s finding.”

    How, exactly, would you honor the Church’s finding that (in your view) a vile fraud is worthy of belief?

    Will those who support the Medjugorje seers as worthy of belief get an apology from you?

    • chezami

      If the Church declare Medj worthy of belief, I will say “The Church thinks Medj worthy of belief. I, however, decline to believe it, for reasons I have already stated.” All this is merely hypothetical at this point, because I have every confidence the Church will simply ratify the repeated findings of the local ordinaries, to whom Medjugorje zealots should have listened 20 years ago. That’s why this investigation is happening, because the local ordinaries called in the Big Guns at Rome since the fraud has not been contained by their local efforts. Medj zealots have told themselves that “Rome took it out of their hands” as though Rome is riding to the rescue of the cult. No. Rome is there because the bishops asked them to be there–in order to finally silence the cult. When Rome finds against the cult, expect lots of “smoke of Satan in the Vatican” talk from the cult in a final effort to dodge the Church’s authority.

      • An Aaron, not The Aaron

        The problem with apparitions is that the Church’s decisions on them are not infallible. They’re like Tribunals on annulments. Whether the apparitions are real is an objective reality. The Church tries to determine what that objective reality is, but there is no guarantee she will be right. There would be no need to apologize to Medj believers if the Church comes down on the side of authenticity because that decision may be wrong. However, since the Church never says, “this apparition is real and you must form a devotion to it,” no one is compelled by obedience to buy into the Church’s findings. We are compelled by obedience to stay away from an apparition, though because the Church usually issues a “stay away” order when she finds that the apparition is not valid. That’s why Medj believers are currently disobeying the Church in continuing to treat as valid an apparition the Church currently believes is invalid. That’s also why Mark and others who don’t buy what Medj is selling will never be disobeying the Church by continuing to say it isn’t Mary.

      • jrg

        Mark, you are right, if Rome condemns the Medjugorje phenomenon then many of its followers will likely form a schismatic and dangerous cult, in which case I will defend the Church’s condemnation with as much energy (if not more) as I now defend the rationality of keeping an open mind to the seers.

        What confuses me is why you are not prepared to make the converse resolution.

        I get that there are things about Medjugorje that make you queasy and incline you to agree with Bishops Zanic & Peric. That’s fine, I respect that, no problem. But this makes no sense:

        “If the Church declare Medj worthy of belief, I will say ‘The Church thinks Medj worthy of belief. I, however, decline to believe it, for reasons I have already stated.'”

        ..where “reasons I have already stated” are primarily:

        1. The Church condemns it.

        2. The seers are frauds.

        So you’re saying that, hypothetically, in the face of Church approval your response would be “I don’t believe it because the Church condemns it.”

        Huh? Is this an appeal to Eternal Rome? 🙂

        Or, in other words, should the Church (hypothetically) declare the seers to be believable (“worthy of belief”), your reply would be “I don’t believe the seers because the seers are frauds.”

        Huh? Isn’t this like saying peasants are credulous because they see ghosts?

        Now I know we are talking hypotheticals. But I think it is instructive to talk in this way because it is uncovering perhaps unconscious assumptions..

        If I were you, I would have said: “If the Church declare Medj worthy of belief, I will say ‘The Church thinks Medj worthy of belief. Would you ‘zealots’ I so quickly dismissed please help me to see what the Church sees?”

        After all, Mark, can you name one private revelation approved by the Church that you actually decline to believe in? Why would Medjugorje (hypothetically) be the first one? Everyone has the right to decline believing in private revelations, of course, but don’t you think it strange that you’d pick this one to start taking the Bare Minimum Diet approach to the Catholic life?

  • Evan

    And I was looking forward to a quiet combox day…

  • Dave

    It is my understanding that after the bishop called for the ‘public manifestations and messages in this parish’ to cease, they did. Prior to that point, the alleged apparitions would take place on the church grounds (in fact, inside the church)

    After the bishop’s statement, the alleged apparitions no longer took place on church grounds.

    The bishop could have ordered them to complete silence – however, by the wording, it does not appear he did so*.

    * As with all things Medjugorje, a caveat is required as we don’t know if we are getting a perfect translation with all the nuances, etc.

    As far as the information about Ivan, that is a more important accusation. I am not sure if the apparitions are invalidated if one seer goes off track, but it is definitely information worthy of consideration.

  • Tim

    Mark, you of all people should know that calumny is a grave sin. Regardless of your personal views, mocking others as you have done reflects poorly on your character. It certainly is something we wouldn’t see coming from any of the Saints or great Catholic leaders. As a popular blogger, you have added responsibility to be an example as others look up to you as a mentor.

    • chezami

      I haven’t ever called the fraudulent seers of Medjugorje blind guides, whited sepulchers, or wished aloud that they would castrate themselves. You can find Jesus and Paul using that language about false teachers right there in Scripture. I’m actually pretty mild. And I say what I say precisely because I *do* feel a responsibility to speak the truth. I believe Medjugorje is a fraud and the evidence for this is abundance. Sorry that seems like mockery to you. It’s not. I’m simple telling you what I believe to be the truth.

  • Tim Heller

    This is old news.The Church’s exposure of Medjugorje as a fake has been public knowledge for years Why are “Catholic” travel agencies still booking/filling up “pilgrimages” to go there? I guess news travels very slowly or else the true believers refuse to accept the Church’s position. The travel agencies better book more tours before the word gets around.

  • Mike

    I agree with a lot of this, but I don’t feel comfortable referring to any person as a “trophy” wife. I think that’s a little low.

  • BigBlueWave

    There’s disobedience against the local bishop. That’s all I need to know to know it’s bad news.

    • Dave

      Yes, assuming there really is…but then the Vatican probably would not have needed a commission to investigate it for years, no?

      • Dave

        Why just a negative rating? How about an answer? If the visionaries are all being disobedient as claimed, it should be an open-and-shut case….so why isn’t it?

  • Ross Earl Hoffman

    Mark whatever happened to the good old Marky Mark who was hoping and praying God would help him with his gluttony? I actually think Mark you go backwards, in your quest to be a Holy Christian when you judge individuals, on these terms! YOUR better than this Mark! Cast the beam out of your own eye my friend and then you might be able to see clearly! Pax

    • margiesindelar

      Gluttony comes in many forms, its reckless behavior…..Mark’s reckless “reporting” on Medjugorje is very problematic If he wants to discuss actual facts, I would be happy to engage, but its really a waste of time to dialog with someone steeped in the sin of slander. Yes, He has to clean his own house first.

  • Ross Earl Hoffman

    Mark, I don’t think the CDF is listening to the Local Bishop? Why do you think that is? If the Seers were guilty of Disobeying the Local Bishop, why on earth, hasn’t the CDF, shut Medjugorje down? I wonder Mark, if its because of amazing FRUIT and testimony’s like this: Fr. Donald Calloway, the popular American priest of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception who is a leading proponent of the Divine Mercy devotions, and the author and editor of numerous books on Mariology, was another young person who experienced the grace of Medjugorje in his remarkable conversion story and in his road to the priesthood (see the story, “Father Calloway – Saved by Medjugorje and the Virgin Mary” on MinistryValues). Fr. Calloway, who studied at the Franciscan University in Ohio and at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., acknowledged that even in America—where we often are reminded of the shortage of vocations—Medjugorje has played a central role in encouraging young men to pursue the priesthood. In an interview that Fr. Calloway gave in February 2004, he explained how many young men he met in seminary who were as inspired by Medjugorje as he was to pursue the vocation:

    “I loved every minute of Medjugorje. I’m going back in March. It’s the edge of Heaven, wonderful…Our Lady is building up this army, this whole new generation, layer by layer. Rank by rank they are coming out of seminaries to take their places. There’s a whole generation of priests coming, and they’re just like me. No nonsense. I always tell people, get ready, because it’s coming to a parish near you…We’ve been formed by the Blessed Virgin Mary and her apparitions. So many of the guys I knew in seminary, they loved things like Medjugorje or Betania or Amsterdam or Kibeho. They don’t have a problem with it. They bite onto truth like a shark, and they’re going to be the guys in the seminaries teaching. They’re going to be in parishes. One cardinal said if it were not for Medjugorje, he would have hardly any seminarians. I compare it to Guadalupe.”

  • Half Heathen

    My wife is way hotter than Ivan’s — and so are my car and my house. So I guess that puts me in deep spiritual dodo.

  • totus tuus

    I see that your personal opinion on this matter is that you are morally certain that the Vatican will not approve these apparitions and that, even if it approves them, you do not have to buy them. But, mirabile dictu, we do not have to buy what you say, either.

    • chezami

      You say that as though you think it surprises or upsets me. You do realize that this blog is, in large part, just me giving my opinion, right?

      • totus tuus

        I do realize that you are expressing your own personal opinion on this matter, that is why I stressed that it is your personal position what you are stating and, of course, one does not have to buy it. Also, according to Italian journalist Saverio Gaeta, who wrote a book on Medjugorje, it was Benedict XVI himself to petition for an investigating commission from the Vatican. If we assume that this commission is *really* investigating and not just wasting time, we can be reasonably assured, at least until now, that there is no fraud, otherwise they would have ended their investigation and alerted the faithful

  • Robert


    • totus tuus

      You must have some kind of extraordinary faculty: the Vatican commission after years of investigation is still working on that. If they had called you for the examinations, the matter would be over now.

    • totus tuus

      @ Robert: After 12 hours from my reply to you, I see you cut your comment about your testimony of two Ivan’s apparitions as beeing the most ridiculous spectacle you have ever seen. That was the reason for my first comment and not the “Agreed” you have left now.

  • john konnor
  • Alan Sides
  • JohnnyCuredents

    The recent letter from the papal nuncio to US bishops (Nov 6) should take some of the fight out of the Medjugorje fanatics finally. I do think the Vatican has let this pathetic farce go on far too long; it deserved to be shut down 20 years ago. But better late than never.