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Medjugorje Chap. 6 – The official response

Whether because Pope John Paul II was an ardent anti-communist and/or because his reign was devoted to creating the type of authoritative and traditional form of Catholicism embraced by Medjugorje believers, he supported the cult.

Following are the English translations of parts two personal letters written by the pope:

December 8, 1992….”I thank Sophia for everything concerning Medjugorje. I, too, go there every day as a pilgrim in my prayers: I unite in my prayers with all those who pray there or receive a calling for prayer from there. Today we have understood this call better. I rejoice that our time does not lack people of prayer and apostles….

May 28, 1992….”And now every day we return to Medjugorje in prayer.” [1]

The local hierarchs and his successor, however, know Medjugorje is a hoax.

A commission established in 1982 by Mostar-Duvno Bishop Pavao Zanic was expanded in 1984 and was composed of other members of the Yugoslav episcopate, their staffs, theologians and psychiatrists. The group “called repeatedly for official pilgrimages to be banned and stated that it did not approve of priests and lay people organizing pilgrimages.” The commission noted also the difficulties of a disciplinary and theological nature in the messages. Their report was published March 8, 1985. [2]

A March 25, 1985, letter from Zanic to the Franciscan Fr. Tomislav Pervan of St. James parish in Medjugorje was firm and clear. The bishop reminded the priest that “[he] had come to the firm conclusion that the apparitions…are not a reality.” The bishop also referred to five previous letters which ordered that the “propaganda stop because of the disobedience of the pastoral personnel and the ‘visionaries.’” Zanic repeated that all public displays and “the devotions that grew out of the ‘apparitions’ and their messages must be eliminated, sales of souvenirs and printed material which propagate the ‘apparitions’ must also stop….I do not allow the other priests, especially Fathers Jozo Zovko, Tomislav Vlasic and Ljudevit Rupcic, to celebrate Mass for the faithful or to preach.” [3]

After the episcopal commission reconvened in May 1985, it stated with complete certainty that Mary does not appear in Medjugorje.

Despite all these orders from the bishop, the Franciscans of Medjugorje went all over Europe, to Ireland, to Great Britain, to Canada, and to the United States to give lectures and even to speak on the radio and appear on television about the events in Medjugorje. Moreover, neither Father Vlasic nor Fathers Rupcic and Barbaric obeyed Bishop Zanic’s directives.

In short, everything remains exactly as before, except that the statue which supposedly represents the Madonna was removed from the church, the visions were moved from the church to the rectory, then again to the church, but this time to the choir loft, and that the propaganda has been intensified! [4]

Also in 1985, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – the future Pope Benedict XVI – as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, banned official, diocesan or parish-sponsored pilgrimages to the shrine. Lay Catholics, however, were still free to visit, organize tours and have a priest with them. [5]

The Vatican has never changed this official policy.

Cardinal Franjo Kuharic, president of the Yugoslavian Conference of Bishops, and Bishop Zanic, in a joint press release issued January 9, 1987, reiterated that no clergy could organize pilgrimages or “arrange other manifestations motivated by the supernatural character which might be attributed to the Medjugorje events.” [6]

In July 1987, Zanic took the additional measure of stating that priests accompanying the pilgrimages could not say Mass anywhere in the Mostar-Duvno diocese. The bishop explained:

The Madonna, they say, started to appear on the Podbrdo of the Mountain Crnica, but when the militia forbade going there, she came into houses, into forests, fields, vineyards and tobacco fields; she appeared in the church, on the altar, in the sacristy, in the choir loft, on the roof, on the church steeple, on the roads, on the way to Cerno, in a car, on busses, in classrooms, in several places in Mostar and Sarajevo, in monasteries in Zagreb, Varazdin, Switzerland and Italy, once again on the Podbrdo, atop Krizevac, in the parish, in the rectory, etc.

It is certain that not even half of the places where the alleged apparitions have taken place have been mentioned, so much so that an earnest man – who venerates the Madonna – asked himself: “My Madonna, what are they doing to you? [7]   

The bishops of Yugoslavia in charge of investigating the events in Medjugorje repeated in April 1991 that “it cannot be affirmed that one is dealing with supernatural apparitions and revelations.” But they followed Ratzinger’s lead and reversed Zanic’s order that visiting priests could not say Mass.

The numerous gatherings of the faithful from different parts of the world, who come to Medjugorje, prompted both by motives of belief and various other motives, require attention and pastoral care….For this purpose the bishops will issue specially suitable liturgical-pastoral directives. Likewise, through their commission they will continue to keep up with and investigate the entire event in Medjugorje. [8]

One of the foremost experts on Medjugorje, E. Michael Jones, pointed out that this statement was “fraught with ambivalence.”

[It] prompted the Franciscans to claim that Medjugorje had been officially recognized as a shrine for pilgrims without specifying just why anyone should go there since officially nothing supernatural had ever happened there.

Writing in February1998, Jones went on to assert there were already sufficient reasons for the Vatican to take action in shutting it down.

[Zanic’s successor as bishop of Mostar-Duvno] Ratko Peric found out first-hand just how bellicose the “Queen of Peace” and her supporters can be. In April of 1995 the bishop was attacked by a mob in his chancery, and his pectoral cross was ripped from his person. He was then beaten up, forced into a waiting car and driven to an illicit chapel run by the Medjugorje Franciscans and held hostage for 10 hours. It was only when the mayor of Mostar showed up with UN troops that the bishop was released

In January of 1997….Peric granted an interview…in which he admitted that Medjugorje was plagued with ecclesial disorders, which included Franciscans ministering at Medjugorje with no canonical mission, religious communities established without his permission, buildings erected without ecclesial approval, and the fact that parishes continued to organize pilgrimages to a place where it had been determined there had been no apparitions. Peric concluded, “[The cult of Medjugorje] does not promote peace and unity but creates confusion and division, and not simply in its own diocese.” [9]

The Vatican, however, continued to refuse to take a stand. Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under Ratzinger, wrote a letter dated May 26, 1998, to a French bishop who had asked for clarification from the CDF regarding the “apparitions.” The response was widely circulated among Medjugorje supporters as a “great gift” from the Vatican since Bertone’s letter could correctly be summarized as follows:

  • The statements by the bishop of Mostar-Duvno only reflect his personal opinion. Consequently, they are not an official and definitive judgment from the Church.
  • Bertone directed the French bishop to the declaration by the Yugoslav bishops in 1991 which left the door open to future investigations. In the meanwhile private pilgrimages with pastoral accompaniment for the faithful are permitted.
  • Since Yugoslavia was now composed of independent nations, a new commission composed of only Bosnia-Herzegovina bishops should eventually be named. [10]

The Moderator General and a member of the general counsel of a religious community of priests, sisters and lay persons known as The Community of the Beatitudes met with Bertone on January 12, 1999. [11] The Community is an international group founded in France in 1975 which had established themselves in Medjugorje in 1989 as one of the groups caring for the “pastoral needs” of the pilgrims. They were invited to establish themselves in the Archdiocese of Denver in 1999 – their only location in the United States – where they were put in charge of a parish. Among their other works, they conduct pilgrimages to Medjugorje. [12]

One of the group’s leaders, Sister Emmanuel, had been transmitting “messages” to the world from the Gospa and was declared “disobedient” by the Mostar-Duvno bishop. Nevertheless, Bertone declined to discourage either the group or the pilgrims from continuing as before. It was reported that Bertone told the group’s emissaries: “For the moment one should consider Medjugorje as a sanctuary, a Marian shrine, in the same way as Czestochowa” [13]

E. Michael Jones believed the years of Vatican vagueness on the subject of Medjugorje were due to Pope John Paul II’s support. Jones was certain that Cardinal Ratzinger “was in complete agreement [with Bishop Peric] that the so-called apparitions of Medjugorje were a hoax orchestrated by the renegade order of Franciscans….This confirms what I learned in my meetings with Cardinal Ratzinger. He was convinced that Medjugorje was a hoax from the beginning.” [14]

With John Paul II close to death, the now-Cardinal Bertone seemed willing to take a harder line. According to a February 24, 2005, article in the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera:

[T]he ultra-Marians who heard [Bertone] speak…a few evenings ago weren’t happy to hear his skepticism about the apparitions of…Medjugorje and fired back point-blank, by mail or the microphones of God.

“Unseemly and offensive reactions of faithful and priests who describe themselves as ‘Medjugorjean,’” the cardinal censured on Monday: unacceptable attacks “even from [Croatian] Radio Maria, certainly not compatible with the promoters of authentic Marian devotion.” [15]

Reporting for the Catholic News Service, the official media of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, John Thavis related comments made by Bishop Peric in April 2006, a year after the election of Ratzinger as Pope Benedict XVI, following a meeting between Peric and the pontiff.  

“The Holy Father told me: We at the Congregation [for the Doctrine of the Faith] always asked ourselves how can any believer accept as authentic apparitions that occur every day and for so many years?”

Bishop Peric said he told the pope that his own opinion was even stronger — not only that a supernatural element cannot be proven, but that “it is certain that these events do not concern supernatural apparitions.”

Thavis went on to restate the Vatican’s position: they were still monitoring events at Medjugorje, that it was not necessarily the Vatican’s role to issue an official judgment on the alleged apparitions there, that dioceses or parishes should not organize official pilgrimages to Medjugorje, but since Catholics are free to travel to the site, the church should provide them with pastoral services.

Thavis ended by noting:

That has left a margin of ambiguity among Catholics. Adding to the confusion have been claims that the late Pope John Paul II strongly supported Medjugorje in various private statements; the Vatican has never confirmed those statements. [16]

During a homily given on June 15, 2006, in Medjugorje’s St. James parish church with thousands of pilgrims descending upon the town to celebrate the cult’s 25th anniversary, Peric urged the six “visionaries” to stop claiming that Mary was visiting them, that it was illicit for priests to “express their private views contrary to [his] official position, that Catholics were forbidden from making pilgrimages if by such visits “they presuppose the authenticity of the apparitions or if by undertaking them attempt to certify these apparitions.”

Bishop Peric said his views, and those of his predecessor, Bishop Pavao Zanic, who was also opposed to the claims, were supported by the pope. He expressed appreciation to Popes Benedict and John Paul II, “who have always respected the judgments of the bishops of Mostar-Duvno…all the while recognizing the Holy Father’s right to give a final decision on these events.”

He also warned his audience of a schism emerging in the region between the Church and more than a dozen Franciscan brothers and priests who have been expelled by the generalate of the Order of Friars Minor in Rome because of their disobedience to the pope.

He said that the expelled Franciscans “have not only been illegally active in these parishes, but they have also administered the sacraments profanely … or they have assisted at invalid marriages.”

Bishop Peric said he shared the view of Bishop Zanic that the visions and the Franciscan “schism,” which began under Pope Paul VI in the 1970s, are linked. [17]

Cardinal Vinko Puljic of Sarajevo told the Catholic News Service in a July 24, 2006, interview that he had announced that another commission would be formed to review the alleged apparitions. “I am awaiting suggestions from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith” on theologians to appoint, the cardinal said. An official of the CDF confirmed to Catholic News Service on July 25 that the commission would operate under the auspices of the Bosnia-Herzegovina bishops’ conference, although the Congregation would suggest the names of some commission members. [18]

Some Vatican officials, however, continued to actively support the Medjugorje cult. The Franciscan Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, who has been preacher of the papal household since 1980, was scheduled to be the keynote speaker at the 12th International Seminar for Priests to be held July 3-5, 2007, in Medjugorje. The Mostar diocesan vicar general stated that the “diocese had never been approached for permission to hold it in accordance with norms established by an August 2001 letter from the bishop. The official said organizers were also billing Father Jozo Zovko…as a confessor to priests even though his priestly faculties were revoked by Bishop Peric in 2004.” Bishop Peric refused Cantalamessa permission to deliver his address. This Catholic News Service report repeated that Cardinal Puljic had announced the formation of a commission in July 2006. [19]

In June 2008, Vatican expert Simon Caldwell, writing in the British The Catholic Herald quoted Italian Bishop Andrea Gemma, the most senior exorcist in the Catholic Church until his retirement three years earlier, as predicting:

You’ll see that soon the Vatican will intervene with something explosive to unmask once and for all who is behind this deceit.
It is a phenomenon which is absolutely diabolical, around which revolve many underground interests. Holy Mother Church, the only one able to pronounce, through the mouth of the Bishop of Mostar, has already said publicly, and officially, that the Madonna has never appeared at Medjugorje and that this whole sham is the work of the demon.

In Medjugorje everything happens in function of money: pilgrimages, lodging houses, sale of trinkets. So much so that abusing the good faith of those poor souls who go there thinking to encounter the Madonna, the false seers have organized themselves financially, have enriched themselves and live a rather comfortable life. Just think, one of them organizes directly from America, with a direct economic interest, tens of thousands of pilgrimages every year. These do not seem to me to be disinterested persons. Thus, together with those who shore up this noisy deception, they patently have every interest in convincing people that they see and speak with the Virgin Mary.

Caldwell also wrote that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had been conducting an investigation since 2006. [20]

In September 2008, when it was widely reported that the Vatican had authorized “severe cautionary and disciplinary measures” against Fr. Tamislav Vlasic, Caldwell declared: “The Pope has begun a crackdown on the world’s largest illicit Catholic shrine.” [21]

In regards to the Vlasic story, when asked: “Does the pope’s decision mean that the Vatican is determined to stop the whole story about Medjugorje or just to punish one of its culprits, a big Franciscan businessman”? E. Michael Jones responded:

I think this is the first step in the Vatican’s campaign to de-legitimize Medjugorje. Anyone familiar with the story knows that the apparitions were the creation of two Franciscan priests: Tomislav Vlasic and Jozo Zovko. Children do not create world-wide movements generating millions of dollars a year in revenue.

When the true story gets out, bishops across the world will begin to ban the ‘seers’ from their dioceses. This has already happened in the Diocese of Joliet, outside of Chicago. Ivan Dragicevic can no longer show up in parishes there and fleece unsuspecting Catholics of their money.

The Croatian bishops in general will say that the findings on Vlasic confirm their verdict of ‘non constat supernaturalite,’ which was handed down in 1990. Bishop Ratko Peric will say that the defrocking of Father Vlasic will confirm what he and the late Bishop Pavao Zanic have said all along. Medjugorje was the invention of a renegade and rebellious group of Franciscan priests who have used this hoax to enrich themselves financially at the expense of unity in the Church and of good relations with the Orthodox. [22]

Others wrote in similar fashion that this was the beginning of the end of Pope Benedict’s ambivalent position. Unfortunately, they were incorrect.

Medjugorje supporters are always able to interpret the pope’s refusal to speak definitively on the matter as a continued endorsement. According to an article from the Zenit News Agency, one of the Church’s semi-official news media: 

Benedict XVI’s approval of the laicization of Father Tomislav Vlasic is not a judgment on the claims that Mary is appearing in Medjugorje, says his former superior, the procurator-general of the Franciscan Friars Minor.

Father Francesco Bravi told ZENIT today that the laicization was not imposed by the Holy See, but rather was in response to a request presented by Father Vlasic himself, to be dispensed both of priestly celibacy and his religious vows.

The bishop of Mostar has made declarations against the apparitions, but the phenomenon continues to be studied by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, in his “The Last Secret of Fatima,” published in 2007, said the bishop’s declarations are not the definitive and official judgment of the Church. [23]

On January 6, 2009, the conservative Italian Catholic website, Petrus, reported that Pope Benedict, instructed the CDF to prepare a handbook on how to deal with alleged Marian apparitions such as those at Medjugorje, The article noted that there was already a document in existence on the subject since 1978. As regards the handbook:

It would reportedly require individuals who said they have experienced appearances or visions of the Virgin Mary to remain silent while their claims are investigated carefully by Church authorities.

The document was also rumored to specify that local bishops should set up commissions composed of psychiatrists, psychologists, theologians and priests to investigate the claimed apparitions.

The commission is supposed to establish whether the visionary seems psychologically unstable; whether trickery or economic interests may be involved; whether any alleged revelation is consistent with church teaching; and whether there are grounds to suspect demonic influence.

One interesting wrinkle: according to the Petrus report the alleged seers will be required to turn over their computers to investigators, who are supposed to determine if they’ve gone online researching miracles and wonders – suggesting that perhaps they wanted to minic other famed incidents. [24]

At a June 6, 2009, homily in the Medjugorje parish church, Peric said that during another visit to the Vatican earlier that year, “the top officials at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Vatican Secretariat of State confirmed they were telling anyone who asked that the Catholic Church has never recognized the alleged apparitions as authentic.” [25]

Peric issued a document on September 26, 2009, enumerating just the most flagrant lies and subterfuges promulgated by the friars Vlasic and Barbaric. As the bishop noted, the seminal act from which all dishonesties flowed was that these Franciscans “did not allow the seers to report any alleged messages from the Madonna without coming to them first so they can have their stories straight.” [26]

On December 29, 2009, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna arrived in Medjugorje for what his office had previously announced would be a “private visit.” However, the media accompanied him during much of the trip as he walked up “Apparition Hill” accompanied by one of the “seers” and delivered a speech at the Medjugorje parish church: “Who could put these things in motion? Who could invent them? A man? No, this is not the work of a human being.” He also visited with a religious community operating in disobedience to Bishop Peric.

Besides ignoring official Vatican neutrality on the subject, Schönborn had disregarded standard Church protocol that a member of the hierarchy advise the local (arch)bishop before he makes a public appearance in that (arch)diocese, leaving poor Peric to declare, “I am saddened by the fact that the Cardinal, with his visit, presence, and statements, has contributed to the current suffering of the local church, and even added to it, which does not contribute to the much needed peace and unity.” [27] The Vatican was mute.

By comparison, when Schönborn, in a closed door session with Austrian editors in May 2010, told them that Cardinal Angelo Sodano had “deeply wronged” the victims of clerical child sex abuse by dismissing media reports of the scandal as “petty gossip,” [28] he was promptly summoned to a private meeting with Pope Benedict XVI. “In an unusual public chastisement,” Schönborn was scolded for his lack of respect towards a fellow prelate. [29]

In an interview with Catholic News Service published January 21, 2011, Fr. Salvatore Perella, assistant dean at the Pontifical Theological Faculty Marianum and, more importantly, a theologian who serves as an expert adviser to the CDF, unintentionally demonstrated how the popes and their top officials had disregarded the Vatican norms in place since 1978: “At every step of the investigation, ‘the person in charge of everything is the [local] bishop,’” Perella stated. As outlined by Perella, the 1978 norms provided that:

The local bishop sets up a commission of experts, including theologians, canonists, psychologists and doctors to help him.

According to the norms, the bishop and his commission “must determine the veracity of the facts and the mental, moral and spiritual wholesomeness and seriousness of the visionary and his or her testimony.”

Fr. Perrella said that if the body of bishops cannot come to a conclusion, then the matter is turned over to the pope who delegates the doctrinal congregation to step in and either give advice, send a commissioner and/or set up a commission to investigate.

The alleged apparitions at Medjugorje in Bosnia-Herzegovina are an example of a situation in which the country’s bishops requested the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to intervene. (emphasis added)


Ignoring reports of the establishment of previous Vatican commissions and/or preparation of a “handbook,” etc., in order to study Medjugorje, Perella announced the CDF was instituting another new commission which would begin work in 2011. Perrella, as a member of that commission, told CNS, “’The pope wants a decisive conclusion made,’ he said, adding that it will be a very long process.” [30]

As reported by CNS on February 28, 2011, “Three [of the “seers”] say they still have visions each day, while the other three see Mary only once a year now….11 Franciscan friars assigned to the town’s convent and sole parish are assisted by visiting priests in ministering to the pilgrims” which numbered one and a half million persons last year. The same article noted, “In an e-mail to Catholic News Service in late February, Bishop Peric said he would no longer comment about what is happening in Medjugorje out of respect for the Vatican commission.” [31]

So the person designated by the Vatican’s 1978 rules as being “in charge of everything” has been muzzled while the visionaries are free to continue to pretend to speak for Mary and the clergy are permitted to advance the charade. 

As regards the “new” commission, seeing as how the local bishops have declared the Medjugorje apparitions to be false for almost thirty years and the legitimately-formed bishops’ commission agreed that nothing supernatural had occurred there in 1985, I guess it would be safe to say it will be “a very long process.” Pope Benedict XVI, in addition to continuously pulling the rug out from under Yugoslav prelates, is either stalling for time or has no intentions of ever withdrawing the Catholic Church’s tacit approval of this cult.

E. Michael Jones stated in 2009 that Bishop Zanic had predicted the result of Medjugorje “will be division and disillusionment in the Church.” Nevertheless, Jones remained convinced “that the truth is great and that it will prevail. But in the meantime 28 years of inactivity on the part of Rome has allowed this lie to take root in parishes all across America (and in Europe as well). Uprooting that error after so many years of negligence is going to be a formidable task.” [32]

  1. Letters originally published in Polish by Marek Skwarnicki, John Paul II: I Send You Greetings and Bless You, The Pope’s Private Letters, Oct. 2005. The letters were copied in a book by Denis Nolan Medjugorje and the Church, 2007 edition. They were made available to Matt C. Abbott “Do letters indicate John Paul II believed in Medjugorje?” RenewAmerican.com December 1, 2007 http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/071201
  2. “The Church’s Reaction to Medjugorje” March 11, 2010 http://www.churchinhistory.org/pages/booklets/medjugorje/medjugorje.htm
  3. Ivo Sivric, O.F.M. “The Hidden Side of Medjugorje” [Psilog Inc., 1989] Provided Courtesy of: Eternal Word Television Network, 5817 Old Leeds Road, Irondale, AL 35210 www.ewtn.com http://www.ewtn.com/library/BISHOPS/ZANICMED.HTM
  4. Ibid
  5. Simon Caldwell and Mark Greaves, “Vatican suspends Bosnian Franciscan” Catholic Herald September 18, 2008, http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/articles/a0000372.shtml
  6. Sivric  
  7. Ibid
  8. E. Michael Jones “The Ghosts of Surmanci: Queen of Peace, Ethnic Cleansing, Ruined Lives” http://www.culturewars.com/CultureWars/Archives/cw_feb98/surmanci.html
  9. Matt C. Abbott “Do letters indicate John Paul II believed in Medjugorje?” RenewAmerican.com December 1, 2007 http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/071201
  10. http://www.ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDFAUBRY.HTM
  11. Sister Emmanuel “Medjugorje Report 15 May 1999” http://catholic-ecclesia-dei.blogspot.com/2009/08/pope-benedict-john-paul-ii-and.html
  12. http://www.beatitudes.us/
  13. “The Church’s Reaction to Medjugorge” http://www.churchinhistory.org/pages/booklets/medjugorje/medjugorje.htm
  14. Interview originally appeared in several Serbian journals. It is reprinted by Matt C. Abbott “Pope Benedict, John Pau II, and Medjugorje” Renew America August 21, 2009 http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/090821
  15. http://www.corriere.it/Primo_Piano/Cronache/2005/02_Febbraio/24/medjugorje.shtml translation by Richard Chonak. Diane M. Korzeniewski “2005 Article about Cardinal Bertone on Medjugorje – Is he a skeptic?” September 9, 2010, Medugorje Documents http://medjugorjedocuments.blogspot.com/2010/09/2005-article-about-cardinal-bertone-on.html
  16. John Thavis, “Medjugorje 25 years later: Apparitions and contested authenticity” Catholic News Service June 16, 2006 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0603480.htm
  17. Simon Caldwell “Bosnian bishop urges Medjugorje visionaries to stop claims” July 7, 2006 Catholic News Service http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0603838.htm
  18. Cindy Wooden “Cardinal says commission to review alleged apparitions at Medjugorje” Catholic News Service July 25, 2006 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0604177.htm
  19. “Papal preacher won’t lecture in Medjugorje after bishop nixes plan” Catholic News Service June 20, 2007 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0703523.htm
  20. Daphne Caruan Galizia “The Madonna gold rush” The Malta Independent Online http://www.independent.com.mt/news.asp?newsitemid=86927
  21. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1052230/Pope-finally-launches-crackdown-worlds-largest-illicit-Catholic-shrine-suspends-dubious-priest.html#ixzz1Dl8yRKq5
  22. Interview originally appeared in several Serbian journals. It was reprinted by Matt C. Abbott “Pope Benedict, John Pau II, and Medjugorje” Renew America August 21, 2009 http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/090821
  23. Jésus Colina “Update: Former Medjugorje Priest Laicized: Not a Judgment on Purported Apparition” Zenit News Agency July 30, 2009 http://www.catholic.org/international/international_story.php?id=34172
  24. Censor Librorum, “The Petrus Report” Nihil Obstat January 28. 2009 http://nihilobstat.info/2009/01/28/the-petrus-report/
  25. “Mostar bishop reiterates rules for Medjugorje parish” Catholic News Service September 29, 2009 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0904306.htm
  26. Tito Edwards, “Medjugorje, Exploring the Origins” October 6, 2009 The American Catholic http://the-american-catholic.com/2009/10/06/medjugorje-hoax-from-the-beginning/#more-13235
  27. “Medjugorje bishop says Cardinal Schönborn’s visit brings greater suffering to his diocese” Catholic News Agency January 4, 2010 http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/medjugorje_bishop_says_cardinal_schnborns_visit_brings_greater_suffering_to_his_diocese/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+catholicnewsagency%2Fdailynews+%28CNA+Daily+News%29
  28. Christa Pongratz-Lippitt “Schönborn attacks Sodano and urges reform” May 8, 2010http://www.thetablet.co.uk/article/14678
  29. John Thavis “Vatican clarifies Cardinal Schonborn remarks, defends Cardinal Sodano” Catholic News Service June 28, 2010 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/1002654.htm
  30. Carol Glatz “Is seeing believing? How the church faces claims of Marian apparitions” Catholic News Service January 21, 2011 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/1100252.htm 
  31. Cindy Wooden “Pilgrims flock to Medjugorje while Vatican studies alleged apparitions” Catholic News Service February 28, 2011 http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/1100812.htm 
  32. Interview originally appeared in several Serbian journals. It is reprinted by Matt C. Abbott “Pope Benedict, John Pau II, and Medjugorje” Renew America August 21, 2009 http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/abbott/090821

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