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Published in Culture Wars July/August 2001

“Open Your Eyes and Your Heart, Not Your Mind”: Medjugorje after Twenty Years

by Rosemary Hugo Fielding

Illustration © David Fielding 2001

Twenty years after six teenagers claimed to have received messages from the Blessed Virgin in a small village in what was then Yugoslavia, the movement that has grown up around the alleged Medjugorje apparitions shows the typical casualties of countless other spurious movements in the Church: reason, truth, and obedience.  After 20 years, the only suspense is watching in what particular way the movers and shakers in this movement will extinguish those three lights of the Church while at the same time professing adherence to all three.

In Pittsburgh this May, Madonna Medjugorje Messenger, Inc., the conference organizers of the 8th Annual Steel City Mudjugorje Conference knocked out reason early on when they chose as their slogan printed on the both the conference flyers and the program, “Open Your Eyes and Your Heart, Not Your Mind.”  It was a powerful hint to the attendees to leave their critical powers at home, and from what I observed, the attendees did just that. 

Once reason was banned from the conference, treading the thin line between creating fiction while championing the truth was a fairly easy feat.  It is instructive to look at just one example at how this was pulled off.  Dr. Thomas Petrisko is the president of the Pittsburgh Center for Peace and promotes Medjugorje through his newspaper Queen of Peace.  Petrisko explained why a notorious false prophecy of Father Gobbi wasn’t really a dud.  The visionary priest had prophesized, based on Our Lady’s revelations to him, the “Triumph of the Immaculate Heart would occur by the year 2000.”

“It didn’t happen,” Petrisko conceded.  But that was not because Fr. Gobbi’s prophecy was wrong.  “We have to look at the language of prophecy.  Look at the word ‘by’.”    Yes, most people define “by” in that sentence as “before,” or “at the time of,” Petrisko continued.  “But historically that two letter word has been more often interpreted as ‘through.’”  Petrisko then quoted some scripture passages where the word “by” can be defined as “through.”  The year 2000 is the portal through which the Triumph will take place, he finished vaguely, but triumphantly.

P.T. Barnum could not have used smoke and mirrors better. Context, as we are all taught in grade school, is the arbiter of denotation. Gobbi’s prophecy does not involve high-level interpretations of Greek and Aramaic texts. We don’t need historical research to understand the denotation of “by” in his prophecy, just a Funk and Wagner. However, the crowd, apparently warmed up with President Clinton’s similar twisting over the meaning of the words “is” and “sex” didn’t blow raspberries when Petrisko floated this amazing fiction.  Truly, they had followed the directions to disengage their minds.  This is medjuthink.

This was followed by a rather garbled explanation of prophecy based on Petrisko’s own personal message from God on how to read prophecies!  Subjectivity is enfolded within subjectivity, and completely at odds with the vast amount of  Church teaching warning against just such subjectivity.

Subjectivity, of course, can take out reason, truth and obedience in one fell swoop, so it was in ample supply at the conference.  By contrast, in surprisingly thin supply were the numbers of attendees.  Both Petrisko and Wayne Weible remarked on it.  “It used to be thousands and thousands and thousands,” Petrisko said.  “Now it’s hundreds.”  The David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh had a seating capacity of 1,000.  It was about one-fourth filled during the talks.

Twenty years is a noteworthy marker in any movement.  Why no fanfare heralding this anniversary date?  Why not thousands coming to celebrate the movement’s twenty years?  Though Petrisko cited “the mystery of renewal” as the reason for the declining numbers in attendance, it is more likely accounted for by the natural selection process observed by E. Michael Jones in The Medjugorje Deception: Queen of Peace, Ethnic Cleansing, Ruined Lives.  This process ensured in the early 90’s “that only the cynical or the credulous came to the forefront of the  movement.”  Any pragmatic, or cynical, marketer would know that a celebration to recognize this particular movement’s twenty years would only advertise its failure.   “It took Fatima 13 years to be validated by the Church,” was the famous “Medjugorje defense” of yesteryear.  Well, twenty years have come and gone, and the Church still judges the apparitions at Medjugorje to be false.  Twenty years and still no prophesized miracle. The year 2000 has passed and still no chastisement.  Could such obvious failure account for the low numbers who now attend these conferences? As if tacitly admitting that fact, Medjugorje supporters years ago tried to divert attention from unfulfilled prophecies by talking about the movement's "fruits." Fruits were evident this year, but not the sort that the movement liked to talk about.

In 1999 this same conference hosted Archbishop Emmanual Milingo of Zambia.  Even two years ago the archbishop’s exorcisms and faith healings were controversial because of their seeming unorthodoxy.  Associated Press reports that he “resigned under pressure in 1983” from his archbishopric in “a very rare occurrence” and that he has “long been at odds with the Catholic hierarchy." Reuters reports he has caused the Vatican a “string of embarrassments.”  The archbishop again headed the list of speakers slated for this year’s conference.  But he didn’t show, perhaps because he had more important things on his mind, like preparing for his impending wedding.   One month after the conference, Milingo wed a South Korean acupuncturist in a group wedding conducted by Sun Myung Moon. Shortly after the wedding, the Vatican announced he has put himself “outside the church” and can no longer be considered a bishop.

False prophesies and exorcists priest becoming Moonies—could scandals like these and others associated with Medjugorje advocates account for the low numbers who now attend these conferences?
Instead of appearing like the holy remnant that Petrisko’s words implied, those in attendance seemed flat, even jaded, and disinclined to sharpen their mind.  The majority were middle-aged and women.  Few, if any, took notes, but there was the usual stampede for the book table when an author pushed his latest book, which most did often.  There was the usual stampede for the tape table to buy the tape of the speaker who just spoke.  (At $10 or $15 a shot for a cassette tape, the organizers knew where the money lay.)  It was, in fact, a Catholic version of the consumer culture we live in.  Passive, hungry for entertainment and talk, shockingly easy to take money from, and willing to suspend all critical faculties, the attendees at the conference showed all the hallmarks of being trained well by television.  In fact, the program noted that several speakers had been featured on Oprah Winfrey, Inside Edition, The Geraldo Show or other television talk shows.    

And like most of what consumers are dealt in this culture, the products, i.e. the talks, were by-and-large mediocre and mind numbing. For $40 a day, the four-day conference advised people to pray and to love; circulated the usual apocryphal stories, bumper-sticker slogans, and cute little stories; and provided lots of rambling, anecdotal talks.

Those anticipating the thrill of the supernatural were not totally disappointed, however. We were told that a “Second Pentecost” was just around the corner.  (Engaging a strategy Jones noted in his books on Medjugorje, the “second Pentecost” that was equated to the 70’s charismatic renewal apparently has been stuffed down “the collective memory hole.”)  The speakers who still have a going concern in the trade of messages from the Beyond, i.e. Wayne Weible, Tom Petrisko and Gianna Talone-Sullivan, offered the usual sensational, fantastical and/or heretical messages alleged to be the words of Mary or Jesus or God the Father. 

Since the exhortation of John Paul II to prepare for a new evangelism to convert the world was often held up as the goal of the conference, it would be well to point out that the above offerings will not train the Church of God for this mission.  In fact, mixing the purposes of the universal Church with the confetti  tossed out at the conference created a schizophrenic atmosphere.  The powerful words of our Pope, saints and doctors of the Church were enlisted to support not only the cliches, commonplaces, and absurdities offered, but also the so-called messages that have been judged not to be authentic by Church authority. 

It was schizophrenia that ran throughout the conference. Are we going to mention Medjugorje, the visionaries there and their messages or are we going to ignore them?  Are we more charismatic-Mass-types, Latin-Mass-types or shall we just include, willy-nilly during the Masses, a spectrum of sounds from New Age to operatic?  Are we going to be Christians or, as I once heard said, “Marians”?   Are we going to invite Catholics to turn off their minds (as the organizers did) or exhort, even admonish, people to read and think (as Fr. Mitchell Pacwa did)?  And, yes, the conference will ignore  the Church’s judgment on false apparitions, but will enforce the dress code on religious garb outlined by Vatican II.

The talk given by Father Pacwa when contrasted to other details of the conference exemplifies this schizophrenia.   The conference program is entitled “The Eighth Annual Steel City Medjugorje Conference.”   The first page is entitled “Our Lady’s Messages…,” followed by quotations with no reference to where or to whom they were allegedly given.  This standard of scholarship was continued in the so-called Biblical Commentary which was really Biblical Fiction, a weaving of Biblical synopsis with imaginary details from other sources, especially Jesus instructing “to open your heart and eyes but not your mind,” which was repeated in bold face. The vendor tables were full of books either on the messages of condemned or invalidated seers or on emotional healing, and all of the adjunct Catholic clutter that goes with this. 

Father Pacwa’s talk, however, pushed against this tide. No mention of Medjugorje or any other of the current seers, except to say “Don’t spend more time reading visionaries than you read the Bible, the Catechism and the documents of Vatican II…If we don’t know the teachings of the Church, how can we possibly discern the truth or falsehood of something, even the truth or falsehood of a Catholic visionary?”  He then continued by comparing false discernment to that practiced by Mormons who instruct their neophytes that if they feel a “burning in your heart” as they read the book of Mormon, then it’s true.  True meditation, said Fr. Pacwa, means “thinking and reflecting and chewing on facts.” He instructed the crowd to read the Bible, the Catechism, Vatican II documents and the writings of the saints, and, rather condescendingly, to use a dictionary if they come across a word they don’t know.

Wait a minute.  Are we checking our critical faculties at the door as instructed or are we “chewing on facts”?   Fr. Pacwa seemed intent on rehabilitating this crowd of Catholics.   He admonished those (and he seemed to think many were sitting in the audience) addicted to the “cultural catechism” which “encourages our stupidity by encouraging us to use our feelings as a basis for truth.”  Talk shows, presumably like the ones sited approvingly in the conference program, were an example of this discredited “cultural catechism.”  Use your brain was his message.  But the rest of the conference was overwhelmingly one in which the person who uses his brain must repeatedly ask, “How do these people get away with this?”  Answer: they are speaking to those who have allowed their reason to atrophy.

The Church, like every other feature of our culture, is damaged by the one-two punch of the information age. On one hand, the facility to publish and publicize allows mediocre and sub-mediocre speakers, writers and “thinkers” to publish and get their message “out there.”  All one had to do was walk around the bookstore at the conference to see that.  On the other hand, it is clear that most people, including Catholics, don’t read critically or “actively.”  As a result, as my grandfather used to say, there are a lot of people who know a lot of things that aren’t so.

As Fr. Pacwa instructed, some books, notably the books on modern visionaries are easy and “fun” to read.  But books that rely on brainpower are “harder to read and must be read carefully and slowly.”   Well-researched books like Medjugorje: The Untold Story and The Medjugorje Deception by E. Michael Jones that present and analyze the facts depend on an active reader for understanding.   They are largely ignored by Catholic media or, as in Jones’s case, banned from Catholic conferences (and the author thrown out) and thus go unread.  And so the vast majority of Catholics lack discernment and knowledge in an age when such a lack is a real danger for the soul.

And so the big picture of the conference has to include the damning fact that the documentation attesting to the falsity of the alleged apparitions at Medjugorje exists for the speakers to read and existed before they agreed to speak at the conference.   The Yugoslavian Bishops Conference condemned Medjugorje; Bishop Zanic’s own investigation, episcopal directives and statements explain the reasons for the denouncement (available through the Internet); the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reiterated the condemnation; and authors like Jones offer extensive research on the damage and evil the events of 1981 precipitated.  For instance, four years after making his Freedom of Information Act request for CIA documents on Medjugorje, E. Michael Jones received a packet in the mail from Langley, Virginia. In it were 20 pages of documents, all of which had been blacked out except for one paragraph which mentioned the fact that nationalist elements in Croatia were trying to use Medjugorje for their own ends.  Those ends are apparent now that Yugoslavia has broken into its ethnic components.

The big picture has to include the fact that many Catholic leaders in the media, the hierarchy, and the academy should make it their business to know the facts surrounding the condemned apparitions at Medjugorje.  It is certainly their business to expose its lies and errors, and especially when they recognize the damage done to the Church by this addiction for signs and wonders.  But the spin goes on, no one has yet apologized for leading the ignorant into error, and what some don’t like to remember about Medjugorje and the messages, they just conveniently forget and don’t mention again.  Those not actively involved in promoting it, but who address the Medjugorje conference without addressing the truth of the apparitions, are simply catching a ride on what was once a big wave. 

Father Pacwa likened reading visionaries’ messages to “eating dessert.”  But he failed to point out that if they are false visionaries, the books are not a spiritual dessert. They are a spiritual opiate, eventually a spiritual poison. 

You can’t have it both ways.  You can’t try to reinstate reason and obedience into the criteria of these visionary-pursuers while ignoring the bishops’ judgment on the apparitions; you can’t attend to the pastoral needs of the faithful while ignoring the lie that they believe.  That is medjuthink.

And so the split personality of these visionary-followers is allowed to continue without any effective reality-checks.  Thinking or pretending (depending on their culpability) to be orthodox, they continue to pursue the fringe or the condemned, the signs and wonders, the fireworks of the supernatural. The hierarchy has condemned “Garabandal,” and has asked that Catholics cease to propagate its cult.  Yet the Queen of Peace newspaper, Petrisko’s organ, while acknowledging this request from the bishop, continues to propagate its message in order to support Petrisko’s latest “thing”: “The Illumination of All Consciences.”  And, of course, Church authorities have condemned Medjugorje’s pseudo-cult, but Wayne Weible, Petrisko and others continue to equate it to Fatima and still talk about the fulfillment of Medjugorje’s “ten secrets”.  (The “ten secrets” according to Bishop Zanic are really 60 secrets since each “seer” received individual secrets.)


In The Ascent of Mt. Carmel, St. John of the Cross cautions against trying to hear or see “figures and forms of persons belonging to the life to come,” but that “we must never rely upon them or accept them, but must always fly from them.”  In short, he told Christians not to seek the mystical phenomena that are the raison d’etre of most who attend these conferences. How then can Ralph Martin recommend St. John of the Cross in the same talk in which he explains that the Blessed Mother became his “spiritual director” directly through her “appearances” in Medjugorje?  If there were anyone who would pop the Medjugorje bubble and rain on its parade, it would be St. John of the Cross.  Yet at this conference this great mystic gets equal time with the ever-multiplying number of authors trying to make a buck from their communications with the Beyond.  This is schizophrenia.

In short, the discredited Medjugorge apparitions leave the faithful in a mess.  The Church was right in holding mystical experiences and teaching in tight rein.  The tidal wave of visionaries, seers, messages etc. unleashed since 1981 has inoculated people against caring whether a thing is true or not.  Let’s have a hand for St. John of the Cross.  Let’s have a hand for Gianna Talone-Sullivan.  In such a state, one can either accept every so-called mystical experience as true or reject every mystical experience as false.  Either way, the person can no longer recognize the truth.  And that is a very dangerous position for Catholics to be in today.   This is medjuthink.

And so Char Vance, worldly-non-believer-turned-Catholic-by-miracle-at-Medjugorje and M.C. at the conference, opines that Jesus doesn’t care about which religion we are, Jesus “doesn’t put labels on us.”  The only problem is that Pope John Paul II in Dominus Iesus strongly reiterated the constant teaching of the Church that Jesus cares very much whether we are in the Catholic Church or not.  You would think Ms. Vance would have caught wind of that document since she is in Catholic broadcasting.  Her opinion echoes the statement ascribed to the Gospa by the Medjugorje “seers” in the mid-80’s that “all religions are equal in God’s eyes.”  This false ecumenism is the fruit of Medjugorje.

Even the promotion of the conference shows the fleecing that results when those who are inclined to believe anything meet those who lie. The promotional flyers, which I picked up three days before the first day of the conference, included five speakers who were not, in fact, present at the conference.  This included such “names” as Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, Fr. Petar Ljubicic, a Medjugorje priest closely associated with one of the Medjugorje visionaries, and a Medjugorje visionary, and Babsie Bleasdell, a big name in charismatic circles.   The website of the conference also listed these “big names” as speakers three days before the conference.

Obviously, the organizer of this conference had to know by Monday that these speakers would not make it by Thursday, the conference start. The website, at least, could have been updated minutely. I attended this conference and paid the substantial fees with full expectation that these people would be there.  Not until I received my program and compared the line-up of speakers with the list of those promised did I know the truth.  Neither the program nor any posted sign referred to this, let alone explained it.

This is the kind of false advertising that causes rock concerts to turn to riots.  But I saw no sign of protest or complaint or even questioning at this conference, and when I asked, I was told vaguely that all of them “just couldn’t make it” for some reason.

With this kind of docility, it is no wonder that Gianna Talone-Sullivan and her second husband (she is previously divorced) chose this conference to make their first presentation since they were effectively silenced this fall by Archbishop Keeler of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. 

Sullivan has a sweet voice.  With that sweet voice and with her husband in a well-rehearsed duet, Sullivan ascribed words to the Blessed Mother that can only be called fantastic.

All that one needs to know about the series of messages allegedly given by the Blessed Mother to Talone-Sullivan when she allegedly appeared to her at a weekly parish prayer group over a series of months is that the Archdiocese of Baltimore  on September 8, 2000, “directed that the Thursday night prayer group meetings held at St. Joseph Church in Emmitsburg, Maryland, be discontinued until further notice.”  Archbishop Keeler wrote in this same statement that the archdiocese “can no longer give tacit approval to these alleged apparitions.  Following a careful examination of information related to them, we find there is no objective basis to the alleged apparitions.”   The third and final point stated that the archdiocese “is unable to support the message of the video, ‘Unbridled Mercy’ and has asked that the sales of the video be discontinued immediately.”

A news release issued September 11 from the archdiocese’s communications office went on to say that although the archdiocese “does not intend to detail a point-by-point theological analysis” of the contents of the alleged messages, “it finds material in them that cannot be reconciled with the teaching of the Church.”

Not surprisingly, the schizophrenia or delusion or denial or lying or whatever or whoever motivates these visionaries continues in the Emmitsburg case.  Though the Talone-Sullivans continue to reiterate their “absolute submission” to the judgement of the Church, they also state, in spite of the above statements of the Archbishop, that “a final and official judgment has not been issued” on the matter.  The reason for this subjective (what else) reading the Cardinal Keeler’s clear judgment was not given.  But their presentation seemed to imply that without a full-scale official investigation of the alleged apparitions, the Bishop couldn’t make such a judgment.  They obviously took issue with the Bishop’s finding that the events didn’t even warrant an investigation.  In any case, it was not the judgment they wanted, and so they undermined it.

And though the bishop, to whom they claim obedience, has made such a judgment based on the content of the messages propagated, the Talone-Sullivans continue to propagate them, “sharing” them once more at this conference “at our Lady’s request,” and do so in order to “build on what our Lady has said.”  Sound like disobedience yet?   Not, apparently, to those who organize and attend Medjugore conferences.  Perhaps their attitudes can best be summed up by Char Vance who introduced the Talone-Sullivans by opining that the Blessed Mother can speak to whomever, whenever and however she wants.  “God bless your ministry, Gianna,” she finished.

 So there, Your Eminence, she might have added.   Father Pacwa’s warning about careful discernment in obedience to the Church fell on at least two deaf ears.  It brings to mind Vicka Ivankovic’s response to a priest’s questioning her about the alleged apparitions:  “The Pope can say what he wants, I’m telling it as it is.”  This dismissal of Church authority is another  fruit of Medjugorje.

It should be obvious to a reasonable Catholic that the Bishop had to step in when Talone-Sullivan began to up the ante in the alleged messages from Our Lady.  Instead of the usual stunningly obvious and banal observations that continuously and repeatedly issue from the mouths of the many others who the Blessed Mother allegedly visits in her busy schedule,  Talone-Sullivan’s alleged messages created what can only be called a Catholic fiction.  It was Catholic in that it referred repeatedly to Scripture, the saints and the sacraments, but it was fiction in that it recounted a kind of Millenarianism, a teaching that is condemned by the Church.    

And though the Talone-Sullivans acknowledged that Millenarianism is condemned, they went on to quote Cardinal Ratzinger as saying “the matter of Christ’s millenary reign” is still up for discussion, thus disavowing their intent and justifying it in rapid succession.

The alleged messages also referred to the latest fad in visionary circles, the “illumination of all consciences,” and included some rather fantastic statements alleged to come from the Blessed Mother such as “Emmitsburg will be the center of my Immaculate Heart” and “I have waited patiently for 2000 years for my plan to unfold.”

In 1991, E. Michael Jones noted that ten years of chastisement prophecies had led to “prophecy fatigue” in the attendees at the Medjugorje conferences.  Perhaps not coincidentally, the Talone-Sullivans instead presented a type of millenary utopia worthy of Stephen Donaldson’s fantasy novels:  “a time of peace and no disease…every human being will live in unity…filled with joy… have a long life…cured of disease…with a seal of protection…suspended in ecstatic joy from the reception of one Holy Eucharist to the next.”

Upping the ante even more, Talone-Sullivan predicted a sign for October 2000.  “Watch and see” the alleged apparition said.  When the miracle didn’t appear, the self-proclaimed seer was not to be, as E. Michael Jones said of another failed prophet, “out-maneuvered by events.”  The Talone-Sullivans clearly implied in this recent talk that the archdiocese’s September 8th announcement, together with “the pride and arrogance” and “the fear and indifference in the hearts of many…dampened the sign that would have been,” and drew an analogy to the attenuated miracle at Fatima.  The Blessed Mother told the children there that their detention by a government official lessened the promised miracle.  However, in the case of Fatima a miracle did indisputably occur on the date that the Blessed Mother promised and that thousands, believers and non-believers alike, witnessed.  Emmitsburg was not graced with any occurrence of note, let alone the promised miracle.  When there is no miracle at all, it is hard to claim it was “lessened.” On that evidence, the archdiocese could say “I rest my case.”

Talone-Sullivan ended by describing the medical and pharmaceutical care that her and her husband’s medical team provides free-of-charge to thousands of poor.  The good works she does, however, cannot be used to test the truth of the alleged apparitions any more than the good works of the Erie  Benedictine nuns can be used to test the orthodoxy of their liturgical experiments.

In short, the presentation from Talone-Sullivan and husband contained all the ingredients found elsewhere in the conference.  Assaulting one’s reason, skating around obedience and embellishing if not mutating the truth, they also managed to touch on the sort of sub-text of the conference, emotional healing.  Talone-Sullivan ended by talking in a pained voice of the “dark night of the soul” she felt at this stunning rejection by the chancery office of her contribution to revelation.  

Perhaps most troubling of all is that throughout the conference there arose a shadow of the “other Jesus,” the counterfeit Gospel that the Church has always warned believers to discern and disavow.  That this counterfeit is most often related to the person of His mother is even more disturbing.

No doubt this observation would be met with “but Mary leads us to Jesus.”  But the counterfeit gospel with a man-made Mary placed in the lead role will not.  It is a loop that seems to lead always back to this psuedo-cult of Mary.
For in this psuedo-cult, Mary always is in the lead.  The impression given, again by skating the boundaries of truth and obedience, is that Mary is the key player in this salvation history and Jesus is sitting out the rest of the game plan.   Medjugorje help to spawn this kind of perverse devotion.  In 1981 Vicka Ivankovic attributed to the Blessed Mother an interpretation of an apocryphal story of a ‘bloody handkerchief” making the local rounds at the time.  “What kind of theology is this?”  Bishop Zanic commented on the interpretation. “From this it appears that Jesus wants to destroy the world if a handkerchief is thrown into a river and that it’s Our Lady who will save the world!”

This is like the T-shirts worn by a group of Steubenville students that read “In Mary, For Mary, Through Mary.”  Or the prayers concluding the General Intercessions of Father Ouellett’s Mass, which he offered “through Mary.”  Or Father Ouellett's changing, on his own authority,  “This is the Lamb of God” at the elevation to “This is Jesus who suffered on the cross and who from the cross gave us His beautiful mother.”  And so, the Talone-Sullivans have Mary talking about “my plan of salvation” and about our Lord as “my little Jesus;” they refer to “her Church” in a way that could imply she is the Head of the Church, instead of the Mother of the Church, as our Lord willed to make her.

Every large Catholic gathering today, whether of the “right” or the “left,” shows the poverty of Catholic instruction.  This conference was no different.
All one has to do is to place the thousands of messages ascribed to Mary by these dubious or condemned seers alongside the Gospel to see the counterfeit gospel take shape.

After twenty years what can we say about the Medjugore movement?  Judging by the size and vibrancy of this conference, it is headed towards extinction.  The question arises: what happened to the thousands that used to attend these conferences?  Have they happily been distracted by the prosperity of the last ten years and joined the rest of the country on a buying spree?  Have they lost their faith in disillusionment? Have they branched into other prayer groups and support groups, still looking for signs and wonders or some kind of healing? Have they heeded Christ, the Church and the saints and returned to a normal, but devout Christian life? This is the big question the conference cannot answer.

One thing is for certain.  For twenty years a false apparition movement has competed with the Church for her time, talent and treasure.  She was robbed of twenty years of energy, fervor and unity that could have fired a true evangelism, a true renewal and an ascendancy of true orthodoxy.  Through the same industry, she was also infected with medjuthink, an odious legacy that will probably live long after the antics of the Medjugorje seers are forgotten.

But the Church has stood against more odious lies.  And she has stood and will stand against this latest assault on truth.

© Rosemary Hugo Fielding 2011

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