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Michael Mohawk wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • What is the Catholic Church's official position on Medjugorje?
  • Does the Catholic Church recognize this apparition like the Fatima or Lourdes apparitions?

I pray for Mary's intercession daily, but do not want to get wrap up in the Medjugorje books and web sites that are not recognized by the Church.

Michael

  { What is the Church's official position on Medjugorje and is it recognized like these apparitions? }

Mike replied:

Hi Michael,

This is a common question; it's even in our searchable knowledge base.
There are a lot of quick answers there, so give it a try.

No, the Church does not recognize Medjugorje like either Fatima or Lourdes which are both
approved Marian apparitions of the Church.

I searched the knowledge base for you and found these web postings that may help:


I believe Richard, one of my colleagues, tries to keep his sources up to date on any apparition that is still on-going.

I hope this helps,

Mike

Richard replied:

Hi, Mike!

The answer on Medjugorje needs an update: an investigation is underway by a panel which will report to the Holy See's doctrinal office: the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
The commission was announced in March 2010 and is ongoing.

For theological reasons, Popes generally don't make direct statements about apparition cases, but support the local bishop's judgment. This is what has been happening with the Medjugorje case, as the Holy See's doctrinal office (CDF) Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has asked Italian bishops to help spread the 2006 statement of Bishop Ratko Peric, since Italy is so near Bosnia-Herzegovina.

To summarize it very briefly:

  1. No one should call Medjugorje a shrine, since only Church authority can do that.
  2. The Church has stated that it could not confirm the claimed apparitions as supernatural.
  3. Priests serving at Medjugorje or visiting there are not permitted to express opinions contrary to the bishops' official position.
  4. The faithful have no obligation to believe in the claimed apparitions, and pilgrimages based on claims of apparitions are not permitted.
  5. The Church has not accepted even one of the claimed apparitions as supernatural.

I hope this helps clarify things!

--Richard

Michael replied:

Thank you very much.

I just don't want to get wrapped up into the Medjugorje buzz, books, and web sites, when there are so many recognized and Church-approved sightings like Fatima and Lourdes.

I was also very concerned when I read the local bishops report on the priest who is no longer a priest, and several of the seers now recanting their stories.

I hope this is not a black mark on the Church or real Mary believers.

Mike
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