Its Official, CDF to Investigate Medjugorje

Friday, March 5, AD 2010

Pope Benedict has appointed Cardinal Ruini to head a commission of inquiry under the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to investigate the alleged apparitions in Medjugorje.

This has been a long time coming and should be comprehensive and decisive.

It has been said that the late Pope John Paul II wanted to believe in the Marian apparitions while Pope Benedict has withheld judgment with reservation. We know Pope Benedict has visited Medjugorje incognito in the past.

Medjugorje has been controversial from the very beginning and it will be interesting to see what the CDF has to say.


Thank you Rome Reports for the video.

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69 Responses to Its Official, CDF to Investigate Medjugorje

  • I predict a Medj-revolt and schism in the near future…

  • Henry,

    From what I understand, Medjugorje has had a long history of disobedience to the local ordinary. Sadly one of my favorite orders, the Franciscans, have been in constant tension with the diocese since the area was no longer a missionary territory centuries before.

    I hope it doesn’t come to schism, assuming that if the CDF declares the apparitions as non-supernatural.

  • Yes, of course I pray it doesn’t go to schism either. But since I don’t believe Medjugorje, and believe earlier work against it is sufficient, I don’t think we will see anything new beyond further explanation for why it is false. And as you said, disobedience is big here — evidence of the bad fruit, and what will lead to further disobedience. Sadly.

    And I agree with another thing you said — Franciscans are a favorite of mine.

  • earlier work against it is sufficient

    The seers themselves, in the earliest days of the alleged Marian apparitions, have been their own worse enemy.

  • Official? This ‘news’ is just a rehash of the story that has been circulating for months. Yes, there is a commission already underway, but not to decide on the validity of the apparitions, only to rubber-stamp International shrine status for Medjugorje later this year. So don’t be fooled into thinking the Holy See is ready to decide one way or another on the claimed apparitions. It’s immediate focus is to protect and ring-fence the tree that is producing good fruit. Rome is in no hurry to reject or accept the claims of apparitions.

  • Pilgrim,

    There has been speculation but nothing official until now.

    Besides, how can the CDF rubber-stamp something that hasn’t had an official inquiry until now?

    God can make a straight line out of a crooked line.

    IMHO, in the beginning Medjugorje has had too many inconsistencies regarding the seers.

    It’ll be interesting to see what comes of this inquiry.

  • CDF is looking into it because of theological questions — what do you think the CDF does, Pilgrim? Others would deal with shrine status — but as Tito said, it can only get such a status if their is affirmation of the vision. There is not.

  • Tito

    To me, it is not just the inconsistency, but the spirit of rebellion which is telling. As St John of the Cross points out — if someone is unwilling to be silent and go through a proper investigation, you can dismiss it.

  • Henry,

    I agree.

    I’ve read some of Saint Theresa of Avila and have been meaning to get to Saint John of the Cross. Is there a book that you could recommend that is “easy” to read.

    I struggle to get through some of Saint Theresa’s writing, so I’m weary of reading something too heavy on theology while missing out on the mysticism of Saint John of the Cross.

    As far as obedience, I struggle with that and can understand when an individual struggles with that as well, but when it’s more than one individual I am of mind that something is being hidden that one doesn’t want to get out.

  • Tito,

    I recommend getting his collected writings. Start maybe with his letters in the back (where he discusses direction and spiritual discernment), then start with his Sayings of Light and Love.

    As for books on him — I think a good one is actually one which will surprise people: Christianity Looks East: Comparing The Spiritualities Of John Of The Cross And Buddhaghosa. Even though it is inter-religious in scope, I thought it did a good job giving a summary of the thought of St John of the Cross (and using it to contrast with a Buddhist thinker).

    A more difficult work is St Edith Stein’s Science of the Cross.

    Nonetheless, I think just reading from St John of the Cross directly is the best.

  • Henry said: “Others would deal with shrine status”

    Like who?

    Henry said: “ — but as Tito said, it can only get such a status if their is affirmation of the vision.”

    Not true. There are two issues here: Shrine status and the validity of the apparitions. Shrine status is not dependent on claims of apparitions. Check Canon Law. This commission will reach a conclusion on shrine status.

    Shrine status will not be an endorsement for the claims of apparitions.

  • “Shrine status is not dependent on claims of apparitions. Check Canon Law. ”

    That may be true, at least on paper, but can anyone name a single instance in which shrine status was granted to the site of an unapproved or disapproved apparition?

    I cannot for one minute imagine that shrine status would ever be granted to a site like Necedah, Bayside, Cold Spring, etc. even if it were legally possible to do so. The possibility that Medjugorje might be fraudulent — not simply “not proven supernatural” — seems to me to be strong enough to not take any chances when it comes to shrine status.

  • Elaine, it is not a case of taking chances but a matter of recognising and protecting the tree that produces fruit. That is why the Holy See is giving consideration to shrine status.

    In 2006 Rome commissioned the Bosnia Herzegovina bishops’ conference to give study and consideration to shrine status for Medjugorje. After two years it returned the commission back to the Holy See unable to come to any decision.

    So now Rome itself is undertaking the study and has had representatives in Medjugorje during the past year making reports on this matter.

    This commission will decide on shrine status appertaining to Medjugorje.

  • “It is not a case of taking chances but a matter of recognizing and protecting the tree that produces fruit.”

    Well, even unapproved apparitions have produced “good” fruit in the form of conversions, confessions, vocations, etc. God can bring good out of any situation. However, that doesn’t change the final status of the apparition or revelation.

    My original question remains: has there ever actually been an instance in which shrine status was granted to the site of an apparition that was NOT approved or found to be worthy of belief? I know it is legally possible, but what I want to know is whether it has actually happened.

    I believe there have been apparitions or other phenomena of uncertain authenticity (e.g. weeping or bleeding statues) at sites that were ALREADY shrines at the time the event occurred. But I have never heard of an instance in which shrine status was granted after the fact to a doubtful or inconclusive apparition site. If I’m wrong feel free to correct me.

  • Elaine, the Yugoslavia bishops’ conference stated in 1993:

    “We bishops, after a three-year-long commission study accept Medjugorje as a holy place, as a shrine. This means that we have nothing against it if someone venerates the Mother of God in a manner also in agreement with the teaching and belief of the Church…”

    This is shrine status at national level.

    However, with the breakup of Yugoslavia and its bishops’ conference there is a legitimate question as to the status of Medjugorje as a shrine. This is why in 2006 the Holy See commissioned the Bosnia Herzegovina bishops’ conference to give study and consider shrine status for Medjugorje at national level.

    The B&H bc failed to produce an outcome and handed back the commission to Rome. Now we have a new commission in Rome which will give consideration instead and this will be at International level. Had the B&H bc given or rejected shrine status then Rome would not be now giving consideration.

  • pilgrim,

    That is a blatant lie.

    They never stated in print or verbally anything such.

    There was “speculation”, but nothing else.

    Immediately thereafter the new bishop of the area covering Medjugorje declared them not supernatural.

  • Hi folks,

    I have been on the critical side, against authenticity of the phenomena of Medjugorje, but must point out that Rome Reports is an independent news source, that gets it’s news like the rest of us. The original source of the information is “Panorama”.

    Hence, Rome Reports is reporting what is in Italian media.

    It will be official when the Holy See, the BiH Bishop’s Conference, or Diocese of Mostar makes a formal announcement.

    Bishop Peric called to Rome
    On that note, you may be interested to learn that Croatian press is reporting that Bishop Peric has been called to Rome.

    Read more in my updated post on this issue.

    Ongoing Medjugorje commission discussion; Bishop Peric called to Rome

  • I should add, that Catholic Answers Live is going to be discussing Medjugorje on March 24th.

    See the calendar here (you’ll be able to listen to archived video for March 24, 2010 once it has aired).

    Here is a list of radio stations carrying it and you can listen live online.

  • Diane,

    Thanks for the information! 🙂

  • Tito said: “That is a blatant lie. They never stated in print or verbally anything such.”

    The declaration was made by Cardinal Franjo Kuharic and was published in Glas Koncila on August 15, 1993, the Catholic newspaper of Archdiocese of Zagreb.

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  • Pilgrim certainly cannot provide us a document or a letter with protocol number establishing Medjugorje as a shrine, and certainly cannot tell us the date on which the “shrine” was dedicated, and by whom.

  • Tominellay… Can you provide letters with protocol numbers for the shrines of Lourdes, Fatima and Knock?

  • Perhaps, if I looked, which I won’t. Those places aren’t part of this discussion.
    You claim Medjugorje was proclaimed a shrine by the Yugoslav Bishops’ Conference, quoting Cdl. Kuharic in 1993, Glas Koncila. By 1993, that bishops’ conference was out of business. Kuharic of Croatia cannot create a shrine in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

  • Tominellay… the last bishops’ conference of Yugoslavia was held in 1993, the same year the declaration was made. The bishops’ conference of Bosnia & Herzegovinia was not established until 1995, two years after Cardinal Kuharic made his statement

  • Pilgrim,

    You have failed to provide any evidence of what you claim.

    I went to the pro-Medjugorje websites and they site exactly the opposite. It is mere speculation.

    Stop with your misleading information.

  • Tito, relax… wait and see.

  • Pilgrim,

    You claimed there is a statement and now you don’t.

    The smoke of Satan in all its decrepitude.

  • Slovenia and Croatia seceded from Yugoslavia in 1991, and Bosnia-Herzegovina seceded from Yugoslavia in 1992.

  • Tominellay… The Croatia bishops’ conference was formed in 1993 and the Bosnia & Herzegovina bishops’ conference was formed in 1995. Annexing as a nation is not the same as annexing as a bishops’ conference.

    Speaking about annexing, you may be interested in the following item which has surfaced this week in light of the Mostar bishop’s visit to Rome on Sunday.

    Reported by Croatia media sources is the news that the Vatican has already arrived at a solution that recognises the importance of Medjugorje to the Church and that the tree bearing good fruit in abundance is to be protected.

    Currently the bishop of the Mostar-Duvno diocese is in Rome and on the table for discussion is the annexing of his diocese which will see the parish of Medjugorje come under a new bishop. Apparently a decision was reached some time ago and an announcement is expected before the 30th anniversary of the apparitions on June 25.

    Next step shrine status?

  • Pilgrim,

    Again, no links no evidence.

  • Tito… be patient. If there is an “official” announcement before June 25, you will not have to wait too long, just a couple of months.

  • Pilgrim,

    You make many claims yet fail to provide evidence for it. You make bold statements yet fail to provide references or links. You know lying is a sin.

  • Pilgrim,

    You provide this quote:

    Reported by Croatia media sources is the news that the Vatican has already arrived at a solution that recognises the importance of Medjugorje to the Church and that the tree bearing good fruit in abundance is to be protected.

    Where is the link or the reference to a newspaper?

    You are lying through your teeth again.

  • Tito… Two accusations of lying and one of misleading… Perhaps it’s time you read the blog comments policy.

  • Pilgrim,

    I’m stating facts.

  • I beg to differ, Tito. You are not stating facts when you accuse me of lying through my teeth. Please read the comment policy on this blog and adhere to it.

  • Tito… I sincerely hope you give time to reading this. Thank you.

    We would like American Catholic be a place where Catholics from various perspectives (and anyone of good will) may constructively discuss the issues that unite and divide us. The subjects we cover produce strong feelings, and we want to make sure all disagreement is handled charitably. Please always assume the good intentions of the other person, especially when you disagree, and avoid personal attacks. All ISPs are recorded and disruptive commentators will be regretfully blocked.

    Comment Code of Conduct

    I will express myself with civility, courtesy, and respect for everyone, especially toward those with whom I disagree—even if I feel disrespected by them. (Romans 12:17-21)

    I will express my disagreements with others’ ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

    I will not exaggerate others’ beliefs nor make unfounded prejudicial assumptions based on labels, categories, or stereotypes. I will always extend the benefit of the doubt. (Ephesians 4:29)

  • Pilgrim,

    You are making wild claims that bishops have proclaimed Medjugorje a “shrine”, yet you fail to provide any reference or link.

    This is getting silly with your obstinate behavior.

  • Tito… The reference I made was to Cardinal Kuharic and I did provide a source for his quote.

  • Cardinal Kuharic seems to have recognized immediately his poor choice in the word “shrine”, for he adds, “That means we have nothing against it if…”

    Mr. Gallagher/bluecross/pilgrim, your kind of storytelling works on the Medjugorje fan web sites you frequent, but people who aren’t already “hooked” look more critically at evidence.

  • Tominellay, taking six words out of context from the statement and attempting to imply a different meaning is not, in my opinion, critically looking at evidence, as you put it; Here is the full paragraph:

    We bishops, after a three-year-long commission study accept Medjugorje as a holy place, as a shrine. This means that we have nothing against it if someone venerates the Mother of God in a manner also in agreement with the teaching and belief of the Church.”

    And the statement made by the cardinal is supported and expressed in this Canon 1234 §1:

    At shrines the means of salvation are to be supplied more abundantly to the faithful by the diligent proclamation of the word of God, the suitable promotion of liturgical life especially through the celebration of the Eucharist and of penance, and the cultivation of approved forms of popular piety.”

    Tominellay, as to your reference to storytelling please allow me to draw your attention also to this blog’s Code of Conduct, especially the paragraph that says: I will express my disagreements with others’ ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

    I accept and respect your choice to hold a different view on Medjugorje to myself, but I don’t have to accept the personal remarks. Hope you can understand and accept my objection with charity.

  • Pilgrim,

    I have not found any statement thereof.

    What I have found are on pro-Medjugorje websites paraphrasing what you are “claiming” as speculation and not fact.

  • Tito said: “I have not found any statement thereof.”

    What statement are you referring to, Tito? Is it the statement made by Cardinal Kuharic? If so, then I have already given the original source for this – Glas Koncila in Zagreb,

  • Pilgrim,

    I have not found any such statement online.

    Anywhere. Not on Google search nor Bing search.

    Therefore you made it up.

  • Tito… in an earlier post you say you had found references. Now you say you haven’t.

    Yet you state that the references you had found are paraphrasing. How can you say this when you say you have not found “any such statement”?

    Or… to say that the statements are paraphrased when you have found nothing to compare them with to illustrate that the statements are paraphrased?

    I have given you the statement and the source. Try making contact with Glas Koncila, the Catholic newspaper.

    Try and accept also that the internet is not the sole source for reference and that just because you can’t find what you are looking for doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist.

    And slow down on the false accusations. I did not “make it up” as you state.

    Finally, allow me to remind you once again about this blog’s code of conduct for posters, especially this point: “I will always extend the benefit of the doubt.”

  • Pilgrim,

    Reread what I said and come back to me.

  • Tito said, “Reread what I said and come back to me.”


  • Pilgrim,

    The conversation ends here.

    You are no longer allowed to post anything else unless it is supported by evidence.

    You have made this thread a mockery of this website.

  • Everyone,

    This thread is not closed.

    Only the conversation between Pilgrim and I.

  • Tito… does that mean I can converse with others?

  • Pilgrim,

    Yes, absolutely.

    I also want to that you are right about civility. I will treat you with Christian brotherly love the next time we engage in debate.

  • I think all the statements we quote should be taken in context, which is why I have pointed out that Cardinal Kuharic qualifies his use of the word “shrine”.
    The original Glas Koncila article, which I have seen, but which I can no longer locate, is only a sentence or two longer than the direct quotation. We aren’t informed what question was asked, or what other questions were asked; it is not stated that these were prepared remarks, or part of an announcement. If this were a prepared statement, there would likely be no qualifier. If the statement was an off-the-cuff answer to a question in an impromptu interview, it would seem not to be a statement on behalf of a conference of bishops. So, then, what is the context of this quote?

    Consider the phrase “after a three-year-long commission study”. When was that? I suspect he meant the 1987-1990 commission that resulted in the Zadar Declaration. That declaration did NOT include the word “shrine”. It follows, then, that Kuharic would correct himself for using the word “shrine” in this 1993 comment. If there was another commission between 1990 and 1993 that determined Medjugorje was a shrine, that fact has been completely secret. No, I think it’s reasonable to presume Kuharic meant the 1987-1990 commission, and there is no evidence that a national shrine was created or dedicated.

    It is also true that NO ONE ELSE has claimed that the Zadar Declaration gave Medjugorje the status of a shrine, and no one besides Kuharic in this statement of 1993 has made reference to Medjugorje being made a shrine or a national shrine as a result of the 1987-2000 commission (or any succeeding commission) study.
    Cardinal Kuharic simply misspoke, and corrected himself with the qualifying phrase “This means that we have nothing against it if…”

    There are the 1996 letters from the CDF’s Bertone to Bishops Taverdet and Aubry that concern the status of Medjugorje, with no mention of any “shrine” or “national shrine” status.

    There is a communique from Vatican spokesman Navarro-Valls from the same year, that concerns Medjugorje, with no mention of its status as a shrine.

    I think that Cardinal Kuharic erred in his choice of words that day in 1993.

    Here are some inconsistencies in pilgrim’s comments on this thread:

    a. (Mar 05 at 4:44) that there is a commission underway…only to rubber-stamp International shrine status for Medjugorje later this year. If this is an opinion, present it as opinion; if it’s a fact, substantiate.

    b. (Mar 06 at 3:55) that Rome commissioned the B-H bishops’ conference to give study and consideration to shrine status for Medjugorje. If this opinion or fact? And if Kuharic already had made M a shrine, what is there to consider?

    c.1. (Mar 06 at 5:53) that Cardinal Kuharic’s answer to a reporter’s question as quoted in Glas Koncila was in fact an act of a episcopal conference conferring “national shrine” status on Medjugorje. (No one else thinks so.) c.2. that the breakup of Yugoslavia now makes this “shrine’s” status questionable. So, Medjugorje is or is not a shrine? Opinion or verifiable fact?

    d. (Mar 09 at 12:39) “Reported by Croatian mediaources…” No link, no named source, no deal. If it’s not verifiable, it’s just a story.

  • Thank you, Tito. I appreciate your understanding.

  • Tominellay… The headline to this thread reads: “It’s official. CDF to investigate Medjugorje”

    Now we both know that no “official” announcement has been made, yet when comments are made on this story, no-one except myself has stated that this story is not an official announcement.

    But when I present an announcement re shrine status, I am accused of telling lies and stories and not having any evidence to support my posts.

    Perhaps you may wish to consider why you apply a different standard of criticism to my posts and not the original post to this thread?

    With regard to the claim of the original post, I could ask the same question you put to me, or perhaps you could ask it yourself: “If it’s a fact substantiate it.” Of course, you can’t do this until the Holy See actually does “officially” make an announcement.

    When you can do this, then perhaps I shall give consideration to your request to provide what you call “verifiable fact”.

  • pilgrim said: “…no-one except myself has stated that this story is not an official announcement.”

    I should have added… “with the exception of Diane.” Apologies for the oversight.

  • …correcting my comment above at Mar 11, 2:35 –

    par. 3: “1987-2000” s/b “1987-1990”
    paragraph 4: the year of Bertone-to-Taverdet letter was 1996; Bertone-to-Aubry letter was 1998

  • I just noticed that “pilgrim” made the same announcement in Feb. 2009. “Pilgrim said…

    Word is that it won’t be too long before Medjugorje is given International Shrine status by the Holy See.
    1:48 PM, February 27, 2009” !!!

  • The sad thing is that there are many people like Pilgrim who believe all of this. There needs to be some more pastoral outreach on the nature of apparitions, to help people realize their limitations and why we should not put our trust in those which have not been approved. Moreover, pastoral work needs to be done to help remind people the authority of the bishop over their diocese, especially in matters like apparitions.

  • Dear Henry, let me assure you that there is no sadness in my heart because of my belief in the so-called Medjugorje phenomenon – only joy. And you cannot deny me this because it is my own experience and not yours.

    For sure, you are entitled to your opinion and belief, but your sadness on my behalf is misplaced. You have no need to be sad because of my renewed faith. Why even the angels in heaven rejoice because of my ‘conversion’. Returning to God is not a sad thing but a reason to celebrate and praise God.

    As for ‘limitations’, who of us can determine the mystery of the God’s mercy?

  • In the last line of my previous post I should have written:

    “As for ‘limitations’, who of us can determine the mystery of the Father’s mercy?”

    My sorrow is for the sibling of the prodigal son who begrudged the mercy and generosity shown by his Father to his ‘lost’ brother – as witnessed in today’s Sunday gospel reading. But I can certainly relate to the youngest brother’s joy and cause for the Father to celebrate.

  • Pilgrim

    That you misrepresent the situation with the apparition itself indicates quite a bit of the spiritual rot within this apparition. That you are unable to tell the truth about it, and promote it far beyond what is allowed shows the rot of prelest. Get thee to a priest.

  • As I said, Henry, you are entitled to view and opinion, but it still doesn’t take away my joy and faith, renewed through the Medjugorje phenomenon and the grace I received there to change my life.

    In the words of Peter and James, I will continue to speak of all that I have seen and heard, despite any opposition to my witness. And as Paul said in today’s second reading: “We are all called to be ambassadors for Christ.”

    Not sure what you mean when you write, “Get thee to a priest”, or by your charge of “misrepresenting the situation with the apparition itself”.

  • Thank you Henry, I saw these news stories earlier today.

  • Well, it is just something we both agree on, so I thought it important to share in the solidarity we can have here!

Genuine Urban Renewal As Envisioned By Pope Benedict

Wednesday, December 9, AD 2009

Hat tip to Amy Welborn

Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday took advantage of a traditional homage paid to Our Lady by residents of Rome on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception to deliver this timely reflection on urban life.

Some of you may remember the TV series “Naked City”, which closed with the famous line “There are eight million stories in the Naked City. This… has been one of them.”  Then as now, of course, the media focused mainly on the stories of corruption, violence, and depravity; however, Pope Benedict reminds us that there are many, many other stories of grace which go untold and unnoticed.

I find this address particularly pertinent in light of the fact that many cities have come to be identified so closely with their most notorious residents or elements (e.g. gambling and prostitution in Las Vegas; decadent entertainment and lifestyles in L.A./Hollywood; political corruption in Chicago; financial greed on Wall Street/NYC) that it’s easy to forget the good that many of their residents do quietly and faithfully every day.

Here is his address in its entirety:
Dear brothers and sisters!
In the heart of Christian cities, Mary constitutes a sweet and reassuring presence. In her self-effacing style, she gives everyone peace and hope during the happy and sad moments of life. In churches, chapels or the walls of buildings, a painting, mosaic or a statue stand as a remainder of the Mother’s presence, constantly watching over her children. Here too in Piazza di Spagna, Mary stands high, on guard over Rome.
What does Mary tell the city? What does her presence remind us? It reminds us that “where sin increased, grace overflowed all the more (Rom., 5:20), as the Apostle Paul wrote. She is the Immaculate Mother who tells people of our time: Do not be afraid, Jesus defeated evil, uprooted it, freeing us from his rule.
When do we need such good deeds? Every day, in the newspapers, television and radio, evil is told to us, said again, amplified, so that we get used to the most horrible things, and become desensitised. In a certain way, it poisons us, because the negative is never fully cleansed out of our system but accumulates day after day. The heart hardens and thoughts become gloomy. For this reason, the city needs Mary, whose presence speaks of God, reminds us of Grace’s victory over sin and makes us hope even in the humanly most difficult situations.
Those who invisible live or rather survive in the city. They make it to the front page of newspapers or the top of TV newscast—they are exploited until the end, for as long as the news and the images are newsworthy. Few can resist such a perverse mechanism. The city first, hides then exposes them to public scrutiny, without pity or with false pity. Everyone would like to be accepted as a person and considered as something sacred, because each human story is a sacred story that deserves the utmost of respect.
Dear brothers and sisters, we are the city! Each one of us contributes with our lives to its moral climate for better or worse. The border between good and evil runs across everyone’s heart and none of us should feel entitled to judge others. Instead, each one of us must feel duty-bound to improve ourselves. Mass media make us feel like “spectators” as if evil only touched others and that certain things could not happen to us. Instead, we are all “actors” for better or worse, and our behaviour influences others.
We often complain about air pollution, that in some parts of the city the air is unbreathable. That is true. Everyone must do his or her part to make the city a cleaner place. However, there is another kind of pollution, which the senses cannot easily perceive, but which is equally dangerous. It is the pollution of the spirit, which makes us smile less, makes us gloomier, less likely to greet one another or look into each other face . . .
The city has many faces, but sadly, collective factors lead us to forget what is behind them. All we see is the surface. People become bodies, and these bodies lose their soul, become faceless objects that can be exchanged and consumed.
Mary Immaculate helps us rediscover and defend what is inside people, because in her there is perfect transparency of soul and body. She is purity in person in the sense that the spirit, soul and body are fully coherent in her and with God’s will. Our Lady teaches us to open up to God’s action and to look at others as he does, starting with the heart, to look upon them with mercy, love, infinite tenderness, especially those who are lonely, scorned or exploited. “[W]here sins increased, grace overflows all the more.”
I want to pay tribute publicly to all those who in silence, in deeds not in words, strive to practice the Evangelical law of love which drivers the world forward. There are so many of them even here in Rome. They do not make the headlines. They are men and women of all ages, who realise that it is not worth condemning, complaining or recriminating; that it is better to respond to evil doing good; to changes things; or better, to changes people, hence improve society.
Dear Roman friends and all of you who live in this city! Whilst we are busy in everyday tasks, let us listen to Mary’s voice. Let us hear her silent but pressing appeal. She tells each one of us that wherever sin increases, may grace overflow all the more, first in our hearts, and then in our lives! Thus, the city shall be more beautiful, more Christian and more humane.
Thank you, Holy Mother, for this message of hope. Thank you for your silent but eloquent presence in the heart of our city. Immaculate Virgin, Salus Populi Romani, pray for us!
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Our Lady of the Americas

Friday, December 12, AD 2008

Probably because of my skeptical bent, most apparitions (including those approved as worthy of belief) are things I can take or leave.  I don’t disbelieve in them, but they’re not something I give much thought or spiritual focus to. The great exception to this is the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe, which has been dear to me ever since I was a child reading Tommie dePaola’s outstanding The Lady of Guadalupe.

The story of Our Lady’s appearances to Juan Diego is simple and moving on its own, and the significance of her appearance in emphasizing the truly universal nature of Catholicism cannot be underestimated.


Happy December 12th.

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20 Responses to Our Lady of the Americas

  • Was listening to the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Juan this morning on the drive in to work. The local “Relevent Radio” is a great source of the positive start to a day. A very groovy and smile generating story by Fr. Joe Krupp of Lansing, MI.

  • I found out about “Relevent Radio” as I was camping to Bastrop. Great radio station. I wish we had one here in Houston, but our fundraising efforts are not meeting our goals to buy an AM/FM station here (yet).

    (scroll down, the website needs serious work:

  • There is only one America. Love it or leave it. Right?

  • ???

    There are these two continents you may have heard of…

    Though I suppose if one loves neither, one is welcome to seek one of the five other continents, yes.

  • The blessings of historical context are myriad.

  • Love it or leave it, Darwin. USA! USA! USA!

  • Michael has received an education, correct?

  • Love it or leave it, Darwin. USA! USA! USA!

    Shouldn’t that be “usa! usa! usa!”?

  • Good pt., BA.

    Yes, rob, I have. And frankly, I’m sick of this “americas” stuff. There is only one America sending its boys to fight to rid the world of evil, and that’s us. I say we take back the name america and apply it only to the REAL america, the only america that has ever given a damn about what “america” really means: Truth, Freedom, the Right to Own Gunz, Monster Trucks, Budweiser, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, and Big Damned Aircraft Carriers.


  • Guadaloupe is easily my favorite apparition. A stunning miracle, indeed.

  • Michael,

    And this pertains to Our Lady…how? I know for some people, everything is a lead-in to their favorite gripe, but isn’t this a stretch? Or do you find it difficult to believe that Our Lady would sully herself by appear in the Americas…long before the USA, and in a place the USA never held dominion? Or do you believe that, by merely mentioning her appearance on the feastday of that appearance somehow means we’re trying to appropriate her to vindicate every action the USA has taken?

    BTW: I hope the first three in your list of what “america” stands for were meant to be juxtaposed against the rest as showing you believe that “america” stands for contradictory things, because otherwise I would think that a) you disapprove of truth, freedom, and gun rights, or b) that you actually approve of Monster Trucks, Budweiser, et al.

    Please, Michael: do you have anything positive to say about Our Lady?

  • I think Michael is just being sarcastic, although it’s completely a propos of nothing, and is distinguishable from his usual postings only in that he’s trying to come up with something stupid to say in favor of the US.

  • I think Michael is just being sarcastic, although it’s completely a propos of nothing, and is distinguishable from his usual postings only in that he’s trying to come up with something dimwitted to say in favor of the US.

  • Our Lady is my mother and she appears to whomever she wishes to appear.

    But we must fight for our exclusive right to the name “America.” It’s ours. Only one America, forever! USA! USA! USA!

  • Dale,

    I believe that the mass conversion that occured after the appearance of Our Lady is still the largest mass conversion in history.

  • Michael,

    I’m sure you think you’re making some terribly clever point via biting sarcasm, but since your parody bears no relation to the reality of anyone’s views around here, it’s falling very flat as satire.

  • Probably the most astounding miracle of them all, Tito. BTW, there is a gentleman here in Michigan, Pablo Calzada, who does a great presentation on OLG. Strongly recommended. There’s an excellent children’s book on it that my eldest has taken to. I’ll look for it when I get home and post the title, author and illustrator.

  • “the Right to Own Gunz, Monster Trucks, Budweiser, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, and Big Damned Aircraft Carriers.”

    Not sure, but I think all of these things are either good or morally neutral.. well.. except the SI Swimsuit Issue. That’s an occasion for sin.

    I must have missed the encyclicals banning moster trucks, guns, beer, or the one requiring us to beat swords into plowshares.

    Personally I think this is just cultural snobbery of the lowest type. And not well executed at that. (Aimed at the wrong audience, for one)

  • “Cultural snobbery”? Are you kidding me?

  • Thanks for the dePaola recommendation.