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Dial M. For Conspiracy

If I knew I was part a grand cover-up and a conspiracy, I would have dressed nicer. Black. Black would have been a good color for a conspiracy, don't you think?

Stephen K. Ryan of MinistryValues.com has accused me and a number of others of being in cahoots to keep the world from knowing about Medjugorje. In a recent article at the site, Ryan makes the following startling claims.

But across the “Pond” in the United States there is a different view of Medjugorje and the gate keepers of Catholic opinion seem to work almost in a conspiratorial manner to quell any interest or trust in Mejdugorje. The who’s who of Catholic opinion makers, journalist and bloggers are eerily similar in their skepticism and condemnation. Two things the opinion makers have in common – 1. They have never been to Medjugorje and 2. They are all men.

Patrick Madrid, Patrick Coffin, Mark Shea, Greg Kandra, Pat & Matthew Archbold, Jim Akin, Kevin Knight at New Advent, and the editors of Catholic Culture and the National Catholic Register.

I speak with some authority on this issue. Perhaps no other reporter of Catholic news in the United States has personally reached out individually via e-mail or phone calls to prominent opinion makers who write about Medjugorje than Ministryvalues.com . What I have found is that they all talk to each other and they all have basically the same reasons for being “against” Medjugorje . They are against Medjugorje because - 1. To them the issue is one of disobedience against the local Bishop who has jurisdiction over Medjugorje and 2. One of the “Seer’s (Ivan) has a nice house and worst of all he married a Massachusetts beauty pageant contestant.
Now Ryan makes a number of outrageous, silly, and just plain stupid accusations in his ridiculous piece. Let me address a few of them.

First, he colors me as a skeptic and as one who has condemned Medjugorje. I challenge Mr. Ryan to find one negative thing that I have said about Medjugorje, just one. He will not be able to do it. To the best of my recollection I have mentioned Medjugorje three times. One was a joke during the 2008 election in which I titled a piece "Palin Visits Medjugorje" which of course was not the Alaska Governor but Michael Palin of Monty Python fame. More on that in a moment. The second time I criticized bad reporting about Medjugorje by Reuters. And the third was in a serious context in which I explained the peril for the Church in ruling on Medjugorje one way or the other.

Now 3 times over five years is not a lot, I grant you. But I have written about it. Further, in none of my articles have I said anything critical or supportive of Medjugorje. I generally refrain from writing about it because there is little to be gained by doing so. I have found that most of the Catholics who read me on a regular basis have made up their minds, either pro or con, and anything I say on the matter is likely to be misconstrued and generate much more heat than light. I could not change anyone's mind on the matter even if I had the inclination to do so, which I don't.

What could I possibly add to what has been written and debated about Medjugorje for the last 30 years? Absolutely nothing. So I choose not to write about it. This decision was in part formed from the reaction I got just from posting the joke about Palin and Medjugorje in 2008. I think I got 100 emails just for that. Half accused me of mocking Our Lady by making a joke and the other half accused me of being a Medjugorje promoter for even posting the video. 100 emails just for that and I think I only had about 50 readers then. Like I said, nothing to be gained by giving my opinion on matters I am highly unqualified to judge.

So in all the particulars of that, Mr. Ryan got it wrong. He states that he has personally reached out individually to me and the others. Nope, never happened. He says that we all talk to each other about it. Nope. Never happened. I did speak to Jimmy Akin about the show Fringe once, but that was it. The other reasons he states, the Bishop thing and the beauty queen thing, are equally absurd as I have never said them in my articles or even in a private conversation with anyone. Not once. Never. And then he calls us sexist. Really. Mr. Ryan is either delusional or a liar.

Last but not least, Mr. Ryan emphatically states, since he speaks with some self-proclaimed authority on the matter, that I have never, that none of us have ever been to Medjugorje. How could he possibly know that? Has he filed a freedom of information act request to procure my international travel records? I have been all over the world. How could Mr. Ryan possibly know whether I have ever stopped in Medjugorje to see for myself? Whether or not I have have hiked and prayed on Podbrdo and Kri┼żevac. He couldn't.

I ask Mr. Ryan to consider an apology to all those he has accused with absolutely no basis. I also ask Mr. Ryan to consider whether or not bandying about such obvious falsehoods with no regard to facts or evidence helps or hurts his 'authority' in promoting the supposed apparition site to which he is so dedicated?



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153 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent work, Agent Archbold. We member of the Brotherhood of Conspiratorial Darkness salute you.

Mark Shea

Anonymous said...

Upon spewing such paranoia, at what point do these people expect us to take them seriously?

Jason said...

I didn't realize the editorial boards of Catholic Culture and NCR (Is it safe to use that acronym exclusively for the Register now? I think so.) were all male. I'll let Mother Angelica know.

Lynda said...

On the substantive issue, there have been many conversions and vocations, particularly vocations to the priesthood, attributable to Medjugorje. I went there once myself in 1988, and am grateful for it. I have been surprised that there is an apparent antipathy to Medugorje on the part of some Catholic commentators in the U.S.

Stephen Ryan said...

To the creative minority reporters

The fact that you refer to Medjugorje as the "M" word which sounds a lot like the "F" word and the "N" word, if I am not mistaken, one could reasonably assume you have strong negative view towards Medjugorje. That you admit in previous articles that you "discuss almost everything on this blog, almost. There is one topic not to be discussed here, until now. The M-word. Yes, Medjugorje." -again a reasonable person could conclude you have a bias against Medjugorje.

Clearly you have unresolved issues with Medjugorje and rather than discern you shut the door. You choose this course of action because you have reached the conclusion that discussing Medjugore leads nowhere.

Apparently it is a much better use of time to argue endlessly about birth control for college aged women than to argue endlessly about Medjugorje (for the record I find the unsolved mystery of Medjugorje more interesting; it also leads people back to God and the Catholic faith in an unprecedented way and my position is that the birth control debate perhaps needs to be worked out in the confession booth - I do support the Church all the way on whatever course of action they take by the way.)

With all that said I did go back and read a couple of articles you wrote and you indeed offered up reasoned pieces on Cardinal Schonborn and recent developments regarding the new Vatican commission on Medjugore. They were really well done. I would love to see more of it and I am willing to guess perhaps some of your readers might as well - but its your show. Please keep in mind Medjugorje is a big thing.

Now to clear the record. I have "personally" reached out to you in e-mail (recently in fact) without a response - which is no big deal - I don't expect you to return every email but for the record most of the people on the list I have had direct communication with.

I have had intense, lengthy conversations with a number of folks on this list and I stand by the fact that the Catholic bloggesphere when backed into a corner pulls out the dreary Ivan married a beauty queen trump card in hopes of revealing the dark side of Medjugorje for all the world to see. - sexism in full Monty

Gail Finke said...

I'm a woman and a blogger and I'll say it: Something is not right about Mejugorje. I'm not saying it's a fake. I know people who have been there and said nothing but how wonderful it was. But I'll take the word of Fr. Groeschel, who is an expert on miracles, the supernatural, etc., and is certainly not a popular blogger: Something is strange there. It is nothing like other apparition sites, the "seers" do not behave like other witnesses to apparitions, etc. I'm a skeptic. This one needs to be observed without judgement, maybe for a LONG time -- decades more. If it's real, we'll know eventually. In the meantime, if people want to go, I don't see why they shouldn't.

fugerunt said...

It's not a good thing that you haven't condemned it, Archbold. You should have long ago, when you first heard of it. One doesn't need to read a lot about what the supposed Virgin Mary said to know that it is either false and/or from the devil.

Elizabeth said...

One doesn't need a Catholic Blog to form my opinion about anything, let alone some private revelation. Red flags are all over the place ~ regardless if some or many people have experienced conversions, seemingly from directly experiencing that place.

On the issue of our Bishops, I realize it hasn't been condemned, yet. But it is also advised to use extreme caution and no priest is to make an 'official' trip there with laity.

But even without the Bishop's opinion, I think it reeks of the Devil.

Pat D said...

Yes, there is something strange about Medjugorje. Disobedience. Thirty years of disobedience. That's one of the main differences between Medjugorje and all the approved apparitions. Someone is appearing there, but I'm not convinced it's our lady.

Patrick Archbold said...

Mr Ryan
Your claims about me calling it the M-word are absurd and ridiculous. One cannot reasonably infer any of the ridiculous things you assert. The context in which I use it makes it very clear that my intent was to show how hot-button an issue this is.

Your assertions are more about your paranoia than anything else. The fact that you double down on them here shows how incapable you are of rational thought and introspection.

The fact that you sent me an email at some point is completely irrelevant. You claim to know all about my thoughts on Medjugorje because you have "reached out" to me. An unreturned email equips you with all you need to know in order to read my mind on the matter? Are you serious?

That you can call me sexist? Are you serious? And you call yourself a Catholic? A Christian?

I wonder what the Gospa would think of such behavior? Are you a fruit of Medjugorje?

Anonymous said...

As an "apparition", it is not necessary to believe it to be a good catholic. The Church has been "testing" this spirit in a rather tepid fashion for all these years. I suspect that is going to change soon.

I go for the APPROVED apparitions only. This one is not approved. I don't like anyone telling me I am not a good catholic for not approving of such a thing personally regardless of what the Church has to say on the matter.

Barb
Fiat Voluntas Tua

Elizabeth said...

Similar to the "Medjugorje" phenomenon is a place in Ohio called "Holy Love". Major red flags associated with that place, let me tell you. It has an extremely devoted cult-like following but has been officially condemned by the local Bishop recently, although that hasn't stopped the nonsense nor a lot of the followers.

I think they need our prayers, those who are addicted to both of these places.

ministryvalues.com said...

to patrick Archbold.

Speaking of doubling down.. that is quite the spin that you deny that your use of the "M" word to describe Medjugorje does not infer the "f" word or 'N' word. The "f" word and "N" euphemisms do not refer to hot button issues - they are used because to utter the full word is considered horribly vulgar or racist. If it was your intent to show that Medjugorje is a "hot button" issue then a different choice of words may have been called for to describe Medjugorje.

I did not call you sexist. Which brings up a BIG point and I am guilty of the crime in my article. Whoever started the Journalistic trick of putting a question in a headline should go straight to Journalism hell.
Is Brad Pitt pregnant with Jen's baby? It is awful and I do apologize for stooping low with that headline. But we are stuck with the trick until Walter Cronkite comes back to life. As Jesus said "He without sin throw the first stone." I am pretty sure Creative Minority has leaned on that crutch in the past. from time to time


to Barb: Our Lady of Good Hope apparition in Green bay wi. was just approved after 150 years. I spoke with people who work at the shrine and they say it was sad that it took so long to be "approved" - many souls were lost.
steve ryan

Elizabeth said...

Dear MinistryValues.com:

I take issue with your relating, therefore seemingly agreeing with, statements made regarding an apparition in the Green Bay area...."sad that it took so long to be approved ~ many souls were lost." Excuse me? Souls ARE NOT LOST because they missed out on an apparition site, even one that's been approved. Please.

This is an example to me of that addiction-mentality; addicted to apparitions (approved or not), so-called mystics, and other spectacular phenomenon that's rampant in certain groups of today's Catholic culture.

Good Lord, have mercy on us.

steve ryan said...

To Elisabeth

"To Christ through Mary" JPII
"In the end my heart shall triumph" - Fatima
You and I disagree - I think souls are lost at times because certain people (me) need to be to be led to Christ by Our Lady. I am just telling you what somebody told me who worked at the shine.

Christina said...

Actually, I interpreted their use of the phrase "M-word" along the lines of saying the "B-word" in an airport (Bomb). It's likely to get you jumped and frisked in a not-so pleasant way.

As is evident by this combox.

I know several people who believe M is real, one is my best friend. I know others who believe it's evil. I think it's a perfectly reasonable stance to say "I'll wait for the church on this one." If the church doesn't know yet and hasn't decided then neither have I. Anyone saying you should support or condemn this is overstretching their own authority.

Christina said...

And if certain people need to get to know Mary, then they can get to know her through one of the approved apparitions. There are plenty.

Anonymous said...

Exactly - let's not equate getting to Christ through Mary with one apparition alone, much less one that the Church hasn't approved.

Speaking of the Church, how about trusting in her wisdom when it comes to Medjugorje? God gave the Church her authority for a reason. Christina - you're point in overstretching authority is right on.

Drina

fugerunt said...

Medjugorje - where the only people who are lost are the ones who don't believe in Medjugorje.

Laughable.

paladin said...

Steve,

I really do think you've made your point, dear fellow... there's no point in going on about it, here. Just do familiarise yourself with the teaching of the Church in matters of private revelation, and realise that your vehemence (to the point of rather wild inaccuracy) is doing rather bad things for your credibility. No one's soul is lost because of any supposed neglect to participate in veneration of any apparition (much less an unapproved apparition, much less any supposed neglect to MENTION said unapproved apparition in ways meeting your personal tastes), any more than your soul is endangered by choosing, say, a devotion to the Divine Mercy rather than a devotion to charismatic worship, speaking in tongues, and the like. Have some sense.

Kathy said...

Can I clarify that the shrine is called "Our Lady of Good Help," and, while it is in the Green Bay Diocese, it is actually in Champion, WI which is about 17 miles from Green Bay

Patrick Archbold said...

Mr. Ryan
I do not spin anything. I wrote what I wrote and I know what it means. You do not. It is used in the same way that people refer to Cancer as the C-word, meaning you do not talk about it in polite company. You do not get to choose my words for me for fear of the paranoia of you and people like you. It means what I meant, not what your mind twist it into.

You are still demonstrably wrong on every other count in your article and yet you refuse to apologize. If you continue to refuse to retract and apologize for all the ridiculous assertions in your article for which you have no knowledge or basis, then everyone knows all they need to know about you.

steve ryan said...

"Private revelations"

Jesus Christ's ministry was about miracles and revelations. The Catholic Church unlike the Protestanst and evangelical faith IS about miracles and private revelations. That and the sacrements is what sets the Church apart from the rest of Christianity.

to Paladin- Why don;t you head over to Lourdes or Guadalupe and hand out pamphlets to the blue hairs telling them that they are wasting their time with their devotions.
The saddest words I hear (forget Medjugorje on this one) is when I hear writers and people of influence say that Catholics don't need private revelations. The Church needs miracles - without them we have no saints.

steve ryan said...

To Patrick Archbold

Patrick, if I had a nickle for every person you "P" off or offended I would be on my yacht. It is what your site is about (that is a good thing by the way - you do a great job stirring the pot and getting people involved and defending the faith)

Now are you going to flat out tell me that I am wrong to somehow conclude that your use of the "M" word to describe Medjugorje does not in anyway bring to mind the "N" word or "f" word for that matter?

As a writer you need to be accountable for your words. It matters less what you thought you meant to say than it does how the reader interprets your written words - I think you know that. You really seem to reaching for something here that absolves you all guilt.

Patrick Archbold said...

Yes. I am telling you that you are flat out wrong.

You accuses me and others of things for which you have no basis and you are trying to change the subject. You are wrong on every count. Apologize.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, Steve, I can't hear you over the sound of Our Lady of Victory saying every religion is as good as the other, and demons snickering uncontrollably. Oh, would you look at the time! It's soon time for my 10:45 apparition-meeting with the Virgin Mary! Got to go!

philomena said...

Mr. Archbold, you have been exceptionally charitable in responding to these accusations. I believe that your truthful and patient replies communicates volumes more than the message of your "accuser".

Patrick Archbold said...

You accused me and others of:

Having never been to Med. You have no knowledge of this one way or the other.

You suggest I have expressed skepticism and condemnation. That is demonstrably false. I have done no such thing.

You assert that my reasons for this unfounded accusation are based on the local Bishop and the beauty queen thing. I have never said this to anyone anywhere ever. This is a complete fabrication for which you have no basis.

You state that a contributing factor to this skepticism is sexism because a list that you compiled is composed entirely of men. So now you are accusing me and others of sin based on nothing whatsoever. You publicly accuse me of the sin of sexism based on absolutely nothing.

You have also accused my brother Matthew of all of the above when he has never expressed an opinion on Medjugorje ever. Ever.

You accuse us both of all of the above when you have never spoken with me or Matt and have no idea of our opinions on Medjugorje at all.

Mr. Ryan, it is your behavior that is sinful and most profoundly unChristian and undoubtedly damaging to the cause you promote.

Anonymous said...

According to Mr. Ryan, "The Catholic Church unlike the Protestanst and evangelical faith IS about miracles and private revelations."

I think that tells you everything you need to know about him and his lack of understanding in regards to the faith. Might I suggest that Mr. Ryan stop trying his ad hoc defenses of Medjugorje and take the time to learn what the Catholic Church teaches. Paragraph 67 of the Catechism:

Throughout the ages, there have been so-called "private revelations, some of which have been recognized by the authority of the Church. They do not belong, however, to the deposit of faith.

steve ryan said...

To Patrick Archbold

Regarding your brother ...all I know is his name is on this blog (at least i think it is. I see the two of you in pictures together) If he is not apart of this blog then I do apologize for mentioning his name. If he is apart of this blog than I don;t feel so bad.

Look Patrick Archbold - the big picture of my article is that there is a "force" call it what you want that truly exists (conspiracy or no conspiracy) made up of Catholic media personalities who together create a wall of warning against Medjugorje. I believe that to be a fact.

That your site says equivocally that your policy is to not write or discuss Medjugorje is EXACTLY what my article was about and I will not apologize for bringing that to peoples attention.

see here what you wrote
http://www.creativeminorityreport.com/2010/01/medjugorje-mudwrestling.html

Patrick Archbold said...

Mr. Ryan,
What wall of warning? I have never warned against it. I generally don't discuss it because the lunatic fringe from both sides of the issue breaks the furniture every time you do. What is wrong with that? From that you justify all of your ridiculous and unChristian accusations?

Pathetic.

ministryvalues.com said...

to "what ever your name is"

You misquoted me..but nice try - I wrote
"The Catholic Church unlike the Protestanst and evangelical faith IS about miracles and private revelations. That and the sacraments are what sets the Church apart from the rest of Christianity."

more importantly I am so glad you brought up Paragraph 67 of the Catechism.

Cardinal Schonborn a friend of the Pope invites Medjugorje "seers" into his Cathedral is also the author of "You Cat" the best selling Catholic book in the world - You Cat stands for Youth Catechism - The good friend of medjugorje wrote the Catholic rule book. This is a big story that Catholic bloggers remain silent on despite my efforts to bring it to their attention.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/deaconsbench/2012/04/whats-the-worlds-best-selling-catholic-book/

Schubert said...

I am a Medjugorje supporter. But it is people like Mr. Ryan that make me embarrassed to say so.

steve ryan said...

Patrick Archbold.

Most of the subjects you take on results in broken furniture. Why Medjugorje is set aside has not been made clear to me. You hint at your reason "lunatic fringe on both sides" - and that's the problem and you show your bias with that comment- you would be really surprised that most who find something good at Medjugorje are not as messed up as you think.

Why do I say 'Wall of Warning" because the reality is Medjugorje is a big story -millions of people have discovered something good there and yet I find the reporting here in the States about Medjugorje filled with bias - Catholic reporters speak of Medjugorje the way the New York Times writes about the Church.
Medjugorje is a gigantic unsolved mystery that is directly impacting the Catholic faith - "be not afraid"

Anonymous said...

To ministryvalues.com

"You misquoted me" I copies-pasted. Not possible to misquote you on a copy-paste. Nice try.

The sentence after your personal interpretation of personal revelation is irrelevant. The Catholic Church teaches that the CATHOLIC FAITH IS NOT ABOUT MIRACLES AND PERSONAL REVELATION. But your personal interpretation is "The Catholic Church unlike the Protestanst and evangelical faith IS about miracles and private revelations."

Once again, I copied-pasted, so I'd appreciate it if you refrained from making a fool of yourself by accusing me of misquoting you.

Drina said...

This is just a guess, but I would think that, if the Church spoke out definitively today on whether or not the apparitions at Medjugorje are worthy of belief, the Archbolds would be one of the first to share that information on their blog.

I think there are a lot of people who hear information from both sides and don't know what to think. And I think it's wrong for Mr. Ryan or anyone else to insist that bloggers plug an unapproved apparition.

Anonymous said...

Schubert,

It's the seers and the anti-Catholic messages from Mary that should make you embarrassed to say so.

steve ryan said...

to Drina

please, please .. this is not about "pluggin" or promotion ..it is about reporting, journalism. ABC Nightline news did a big story on Medjugorje last year for the 30 year anniversary - - The story was pretty good . I had no problems with "Lame Stream Media's reporting on Medjugorje. They "got it" They understand it is simply an unsolved intriguing mystery directly impacting millions of Catholics. Ministryvalues thinks it is a great, interesting story. The problem with many Catholic reporting (and reporters) is unless they say something negative about Medjugorje - they fear they will be tagged as a promoter - that they are giving Medjugorje their tacit approval - raised eyebrows to be followed. They have not made the leap to simply report on Medjugorje in an objective fashion. This policy by the Catholic press to just wait and see what the Vatican decides ignores the story of what is going on at Medjugorje from a human interest point of view.

fugerunt said...

I completely agree with Steve. Catholic press needs to expose this hoax and spread the word instead of tripping around it and wait for the Vatican to gently condemn it.

paladin said...

(*sigh*) I'll probably regret this, but...

Steve Ryan wrote:

Jesus Christ's ministry was about miracles and revelations.

That's a rather bizarre, esoteric and minimalist characterisation of Our Lord's ministry, friend; what, did the Atonement mean so little as not to merit any mention? Was the resurrection an afterthought, and a mere detail? Were His teachings so bereft of importance as to be subordinate to "signs and wonders" and "revelations"? (Now, if you're using "revelations" in the broad sense of "Jesus Christ is the Revelation of God", then yes... but that'd be so broad as to be a tautology [i.e. silly even to mention, and wouldn't further your point at all].) The Ministry of Our Blessed Lord was far more than that.

The Catholic Church unlike the Protestanst and evangelical faith IS about miracles and private revelations.

I'm afraid you're not even very familiar with Protestant beliefs, friend (and do you suppose that Evangelicals, in the sense that you mean the word, are not Protestants? What, do you envision Evangelical Buddhists?). Protestant Evangelicals, especially, champion the idea of miracles happening in the context of a Christian walk; and the entire Protestant paradigm is about private revelation (in the sense that they believe the Holy Spirit guides them to specific truths).

That and the sacrements is what sets the Church apart from the rest of Christianity.

See above... in addition to the other manifold ways in which you err, here. I appreciate the fact that you are enthusiastic about your particular devotion; but your zeal to convert everyone else to your (non-obligatory) cause is leading you to run rough-shod over truth accuracy, and even sane reason! Do calm down, and think about this reasonably!

to Paladin- Why don;t you head over to Lourdes or Guadalupe and hand out pamphlets to the blue hairs telling them that they are wasting their time with their devotions.

(?) Because it would not be true, and I try not to say things which are false! Are you somehow under the impression that I think devotions to approved apparitions are a "waste of time"? I assure you, I think nothing of the sort; whatever gave you that idea? I said only that your assertion of "souls are damned through neglect of specific apparitions" is provable nonsense; so long as one's devotion to them does not outstrip sane proportion (and does not fly in the face of Church teaching and/or discipline), I praise God for His great gifts bestowed within authentic, approved apparitions.

The saddest words I hear (forget Medjugorje on this one) is when I hear writers and people of influence say that Catholics don't need private revelations.

My dear fellow: the CHURCH, to whom you presumably give your allegiance, teaches that very fact (that private revelations are not necessary for salvation). They can help, yes... but they are not "needed" in the sense that you mean it (i.e. in the sense that souls could be lost through a "too-slow approval process" of an apparition--a presumptuous statement, at very least). I'll echo Christina and Drina: devotion to the Blessed Mother is not at all identical with any given devotion to any given apparition. One can be a good and faithful Catholic while still (hypothetically) having no interest at all in, say, Our Lady of Guadalupe, or the like.

The Church needs miracles - without them we have no saints.

(*sigh*)

Perhaps Mark 8:12 might address this (to say nothing of the lives of St. Therese of Lisieux, St. Aloysius Gonzaga, St. Jerome, and innumerable Saints to whom no miracles were ascribed in their lifetimes)?

Patrick Archbold said...

MR Ryan

My last comment on this matter. You are so logically challenged that it is difficult to reply, but...

You suggest that my reference to lunatic fringe on both sides shows my bias. No way. There is lunatic fringe on both sides. I define that as anyone who is so entrenched in their position that they have lost the ability to have reasonable and polite discourse on the topic. I am now expanding that definition to include people who accuse me of horrible things simply because I choose not to discuss it much.

Yeah. Lunatic fringe. Look in the mirror.

Wine in the Water said...

Mr Ryan,

I don't have an opinion on Medjugorje. I have not been there, but I've heard many anecdotes about good fruits of Medjugorje. Normally, that would lead me to conclude that Medjugorje is a true Marian Apparition.

However, it is the behavior of Medjugorje proponents such as yourself that leave me undecided. I am not unconvinced because of some cabal of male Catholic commenters. I am unconvinced because of *you*. I am unconvinced because of the un-Christlike, uncharitable and judgmental behavior of so many of Medjugorje's most vocal proponents. I am unconvinced because talk of Medjugorje leads so many Medjugorje supporters to behave in ways utterly alien to Catholic life.

I do not know whether Medjugorje is authentic or not, but the only reason I don't know is because of the behavior of Medjugorje supports themselves. If you want to convince people of the authenticity of Medjugorje, then start acting like a devotee of Lourdes instead of a devotee of Bayside.

Anonymous said...

I think Mr. Ryan is playing you Archbolds for suckers.

How is his not a case of passive aggressive trolling?

JOB

Stephen Ryan said...

to paladin:

beautiful thoughtful words - really. I don't agree with all but I deeply respect the reason and charity in your comments..It may not seem like it but when I start in on comboxes I truly am hoping for thoughtful dialog - not hit and runs - thank you paladin for taking the time with your post.. With that said.... *%$#^!!!! (just kidding) thanks again

steve ryan said...

Patrick Archbold

it did not need to get here so quickly.
Read your headlines on this blog (i do almost everyday) On this blog you are accusing somebody of something everyday. I don;t get the thin skin. This really could have been a discussion and perhaps bring some illumination to the issues that divide. I am serious.

Elizabeth said...

To ministryvalues.com

I'm probably going to regret this sarcasm and lack of charity but.....Cardinal Schonborn as a good example? Are you serious? You say:

"Cardinal Schonborn a friend of the Pope invites Medjugorje "seers" into his Cathedral is also the author of "You Cat" the best selling Catholic book in the world - You Cat stands for Youth Catechism - The good friend of medjugorje wrote the Catholic rule book. This is a big story that Catholic bloggers remain silent on despite my efforts to bring it to their attention."


First of all, I know for sure that many Catholic bloggers have not remained silent (as you put it) on Schonborn's antics (oops, there's my lack of charity).

Second, yes, he is an old friend of the Holy Father. But he also has been outright disobedient to the Holy Father's wishes regarding more than a few things, one being Medjugorje.

Third, you using the sales or seeming popularity of YouCat means what? That it's good? That it's authentically Catholic? That there is no watered-down, make-faith-appealing-to-the-young-people kind of teachings in it? I don't know if that's the case, so I shouldn't say. But from the widely reported antics of this Archbishop, clown Masses and all, I'm speculating that YouCat doesn't have much solidness to it and not much of a selling point for Medjugorje....could be wrong.

No apparition or belief thereof is required by any Catholic. Not even Lourdes, Fatima, Guadalupe. Our Blessed Mother comes sometimes, yes. But until or if Medjugorje is ever approved, which I believe is extremely unlikely, Catholics should stay away from it. We have all we require without the spectacular, sensational, false apparitions.

Anonymous said...

The thing that makes me think the apparitions are not of the Blessed Virgen Mary is that people (including my friends and family) won't accept my opinion that I want to wait until the Church says the apparitions are real or not. Because of that, they get fighting mad. Also, my friends and family are not terribly orthodox in their beliefs of Catholicism and tend to pick and choose the teachings they like. To me, that's a problem and the whole thing has been so divisive that it's hard to think the apparitions could be from our Blessed Mother. My two cents.

Elizabeth said...

Mr. Archbold:

You weren't kidding when you said that posting on this supposed-apparition invites HUGE reactions and comments. It certainly is divisive, isn't it? Lots of strong opinions.

Thanks for the opportunity to sound off on this!

Stephen Ryan said...

elisabeth

I assume you are talking about Cardinal Schonborn's act of overruling a parish priest's efforts to dismiss a gay man in a same sex marriage from sitting on a church committee.
Yes this did happen, yes, Schonborn invited "seers" into his Cathedral. Yes Schonborn is the editor/author of the book on the Catholic Catechism, Yes he is friend of the Pope.
It is my point of my article - (in a way)these are extraordinary times. He is a Cardinal - we as Catholics should take pause and respect and discern what this man is doing. Who are we to judge him. It is worth asking ourselves how did this moment arrive where the author of the Catholic rule book is involved in such things.
Remember what Our Lady said at Fatima "My heart shall triumph" - perhaps Schonborn is a sign of the times.

Dave said...

I'm with anon, the thin skinned behavior of Medjugorje supporters puts me off as does the actions of Franciscans associated with it and the seers themselves. Even worse is the lack of a coherent message and the years of visions. I take seriously the cautions St Teresa of Avila (a great mystic herself) had concerning visions. She said they should not be viewed as important and that obedience was more important and crucially that visions from God would always leave the person changed; marked by an increase in humility. I've seen no evidence of humility or steady obedience in the seers. No vocations among then for example, while Lourdes and Fatima led to religious vocations. I say this as someone who's devoted to an approved private revelation (The Divine Mercy of St. Faustina). I'd love to have another approved one, but seriously Medjugorje is going the wrong direction IMO.

Anonymous said...

Steve –
I am a well educated and faithful American Catholic woman devoted to our Holy Mother. Early on I was intrigued by Majaegorie . What an amazing thing for her to appear in my lifetime! I have heard the “visionaries” speak and read many books and articles on the events. I prayed, then I read more. With each passing year I have grown more skeptical and increasingly convinced that the apparitions are a hoax or at the very least a delusion. Your hostility and paranoid attack on Mr. Archbold have convinced me of their error. I will pray for you and all those who have become dependent on them for their faith.

Anonymous said...

*Medjugorje - sorry I didn't look back at my spelling ^

Elizabeth said...

Mr. Ryan,

Now you've got me really confused. I thought you were bringing up Archbishop Schonborn as a selling point for Medjugorje; since HE seems to believe, we should. Is that not what you were trying to get across? If not, I apologize for my response to you.

I'm sorry but I'm not following your logic at all. In your response to me, you seem to be saying two different things. 1) "He is a Cardinal - we as Catholics should take pause and respect and discern what this man is doing. Who are we to judge him." But then 2) "Remember what Our Lady said at Fatima "My heart shall triumph" - perhaps Schonborn is a sign of the times."

So what do these statements mean? That Schonborn as a Cardinal should not be judged by us; he must be right? Or Schonborn is wrong and a sign of the times?

Patrick Archbold said...

Mr. Ryan,
You accuse me and my brother as being part of some anti-Medjugorje sexist cabal and make many other false assertions. You refuse to retract or apologize for doing so. And you are surprised that we missed this opportunity for dialogue?

Are you serious?

You need some serious help.

Stephen Ryan said...

to "whoever your name is"

I want to make one point clear and I am getting a little weary of the charge that I am some kind of evangelical for Medjugoreje. Minsitryvalues.com REPORTS and writes about Medjugorje. The entire problem is that when EVER a word is written that is not critical of Medjugorje immediately the writer is labeled a "Promoter".. It is the ENTIRE point of my article (which i doubt many read) and that is Medjugoreje can not be written about in the United States unless it is negative for fear being accused of promoting an unapproved apparition. If you write something negative you are an objective reporter if you right something positive you are promoter. Where does it say anywhere on ministryvalues.com that we are dedicated to promoting Medjugorje. Please lets at least be accurate.

steve ryan said...

Patrick Archbold.

Your site, as I said, at its core, is about poking a stick into the cage of mean dogs. aka obama, liberals etc. that's all good. You rattle the cage. I rattle the cage. I do get upset with the cone of silence towards Medjugoreje - so I rattle the cage and poke a stick at the dog. All you want is an apology, you are not interested in a conversation. Ok I upset you I got your attention. You are a successful writer whose opinion is valued because you cause a stir. You get people's attention. You are castigating me for what you do everyday. I still think a reasoned conversation about Medjugorje is possible. My guess is if we were in the same town (i live in Alexandria, va, near Wash, D.C)- we could have a beer and actually have an interesting conversation - seriously..

Scott W. said...

I'm a male that has never been to Medj.--I don't need to drink the whole gallon of milk to know it is spoiled when one whiff will do.

Patrick Archbold said...

You are sick.

steve ryan said...

I guessed wrong

Paul said...

I know quite a few people who get very upset if you question their favorite private revelation, Medjugorje, Bayside, etc. I don't understand their fervor over something that is not required for eternal salvation. Public revelation ended with the death of the last Apostle, and everything we need to be saved is contained in public revelation. We don't need to believe in any private revelation if we choose not to, and that includes Fatama and Lourdes.
Everything I've heard about Medjugoreje leads me to extreme caution at the least...lets just ignore it and it will go away.

MiracleWitness said...

Please, everyone. Silence this venomous debate with prayers for wisdom. If you have been unfairly criticized, Jesus knows.

Anonymous said...

My view of this latest "apparition" in Croatia is that it is not authentic. I read a book published back in the 1990's by E. Michael Jones called "The Deception" He claimed that it is not authentic based on the things the seers alleged the way they acted and the disobedience of local Franciscans to a local Bishop. Also the Vatican is itself wrapping up its own investigation of the visions in a few short months.

pilgrim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
pilgrim said...

pilgrim said...
Medjugorje may present a challenge for some, but poking sticks and rattling cages in the way Steve has set out to do simply to generate debate is not, in my opinion, what the Medjugorje message is about.

Medjugorje is primarily a call to repentance and reconciliation. This doesn’t manifest when people are antagonised and accused in this way. Disharmony sets in and hearts harden and close. Peace is disturbed.

It is said that all wars start in the heart.

Anonymous said...

One can only conclude that SR is desperate to drive up his site visits so he has provoked an entirely baseless, illogical, vitriolic attack against a handful of bloggers in the hope they will send some readers his way. I suppose some will, like a few gawkers looking at roadkill. They will visit and wonder to themselves, what the heck is "ministry values" and what the heck does that have to do with Medjugorje and what could "sexism" possibly have to do with opposing it? Take a stick and poke it for a while .. what a bloodly mess ..

And, as others have noted, a distraction from the messages and values of Medjugorje. Just another street peddler trying to make a profit off of "Catholic" junk ..

MarkC

Elizabeth said...

The disharmony evidenced in this back and forth is PRECISELY the fruits of Medjugorje. Mark C. and Pilgrim have just been trying to calm everyone and focus on the true meaning of that place; Pilgrim says it is repentance and reconciliation. Sounds good, doesn't it? No, it's the Evil One at work ~ I'd bet on it.

Let's all just ignore him and maybe he'll go away.

Lynda said...

People ought to keep to the issues and not make personal attacks. There is a gang-like mentality developing which is not worthy of this blog. I think Steve is sincere and intended no harm. It is best not to write in anger.

Patrick Coffin said...

"A fanatic is a man who can't change his mind and won't change the subject."

-- Winston Churchill

steve ryan said...

to Patrick coffin..

well said Patrick

what pelvic issue do you intend to discuss tomorrow.

steve ryan said...

I have made a change to my article I have removed the names of the editors of this website and changed it to just Creative Minority Report. My intentions were to start a dialog that would be of value to Catholics who struggle/want to know more about this issue- instead we got a train wreck. I will say to the editors of this site. You guys seek controversy - I go to your site everyday - If somebody calls you out and takes offense for your work I would suggest you reach out with hopes of understanding why. Instead you immediately demand an apology and resort to name calling i.e "You are sick" I hope we can all do better next time.

Patrick Archbold said...

I get criticized all the time and don't give a whit. What you did is entirely different. You lied and you accused us of sin in public.

To start dialogue? Hogwash.

No one in their right mind would try to start a dialogue that way. Oh wait.....

Stephen Ryan said...

to the editors of this web site

please let Te Deum luadamus (you are linking to the site below) that I DID NOT SENT HER AN UNSOLICITED E-MAIL...Complete fabrication and she makes this a big part of her story. I did not send her any e-mail at all - I have not contacted them in probably over a year.

I am beginning believe my somewhat tongue and cheek headline to my article - "secret conspiracy" - may be based on more truth that I even thought.

I have sent Te Deum luadamus letting them know I sent no e-mail but I am not hopeful

ministryvalues.com said...

i stand correctd.. I just checked my email sends.. I did send out an email blast and indeed the web site was on my email tree.. I will remove diana from my list..

sorry

ministryvalues.com said...

go get em Te Deum laudamus .. kick some medjugorje behind...

I appreciate you sharing private emails with the world. Class act.

Patrick Archbold said...

Ryan
You accuse people with no basis of being part of anti-Medjugorje sexist cabal and other nonsensical things and you have the nerve criticize Diane for sharing an email blast?

Have you no sense of reality?

ministryvalues.com said...

she shared a private e-mail I sent to her this morning.. I felt that was wrong.

she had every right to post my "email blast" of which I have apologized to her and on this site.

ministryvalues.com said...

I have removed the word "sexism" from the headline of my article and the body...

I apologize sincerely to those it offended

steve ryan

pilgrim said...

Steve, what did you expect when you brandished your sword in the way you did? Death by tickling?

Patrick Archbold said...

Now how about removing your completely unfounded assertions that I am a Medjugorje skeptic, I have condemned it, that I ascribe to spurious reasons for this rejection, and your assertion that I have never been there. Since you cannot prove (or even reasonably suggest) a single one, don't think you should remove the entire post.

ministryvalues.com said...

what did i expect? good question..

I expected fireworks but I was hoping it would be a means to an end..it just ended up being "mean"

what do I what to get out of this?...
I want the CMR, National Catholic Register and all the rest to understand Medjugorje no longer just some "unapproved" apparition.

I would like Catholic media to get beyond “we dont; report on unapproved apparitions” because this misses the point altogether – and leads to my great frustration.

Medjugorje is not just about Marian apparitions any longer. It is about hundreds of priests saying Medjugorje led them to their vocation. It is about millions of people finding spiritual renewal there. It is about Catholics returning to the confessional booth. It is about a great unsolved religious mystery..It is about medjugorje being the third most popular Catholic “shrine” in the world behind Guadalupe and Lourdes. It is about a Cardinal inviting seers into his Cathedral and most important it is about millions of conversions back to God and our savior.

ministryvalues.com said...

to patrick

let's try and end the attempt at censorship.

You want to change your posts for using the "M" word?.. You want to change your post that you will discuss anything except Medjugorje? I perceive it as a condemnation of sorts (not worth your trouble etc) You may not think so but I do. that is how it goes. I did point out that you have written excellent balanced pieces on Medjugorje in this combox

If you have been to medjugorje then great.. let me know if it is important to you. We all make some assumptions when we write. I determined and made the editorial decision that all the people I named had not been there because I beat the bushes pretty hard and these things have away of getting back to me. I have (don;t throw anything) have gained some credibility in being accurate in my reporting on Medjugorje.

steve ryan

Patrick Archbold said...

Did I accuse anyone of anything in my M-word post? No.

Your actions are irrational, unjust, and un-Christian.

You have no credibility.

Patrick Archbold said...

Clearly, your fanaticism does not extend to the truth.

Wine in the Water said...

Mr. Ryan,

I have to say, the two aren't nearly equivalent. You want CMR to change posts because you interpret them to mean something that they did not intend. They want you to change your post because it is *untrue*. Prone to misinterpretation is a far cry from untruth.

Also, you keep making this claim to journalistic credibility. I only studied journalism while on my high school newspaper, but even I know that "I looked and couldn't find any evidence that it wasn't true so I reported it as true" doesn't meet anything resembling journalistic credibility. If you don't find any evidence whether or not someone has been somewhere, you do not get to report as fact that they have never been there. You are, to put it bluntly, bearing false witness.

And so I will re-iterate. When I read accounts like Fr. Longnecker's, I want to believe that Medjugorje is a true apparition. But when the behavior of proponents is more often like what you have presented here and much less often like the good Father's, and there is *so* much disobedience to the Church involved, it becomes much more difficult to believe that the apparitions are from God.

ministryvalues.com said...

to Wine

I am not a proponent so please.
Again your accusation is exactly what my article is about. There is a force - conspiratorial or not - that tags those who write about medjugorje as "promoters" if they write about it without skepticism. -just like you have. Hence nobody dare write about it for fear of the wrath of the "cabal" (sorry could not resist). I am offended by it. and good golly don;t put the truth on Medjugorje on me.

Medjugorje is a great unsolved religious mystery impacting millions. What part of this do you all not understand.
Problem is we feel as Catholic journalists we can not talk about it until the Church has ruled. ABC News though can send their prestigious Nightline crew to see what is going on and REPORT...Not so with the cowardly Catholic press.

This all boils down to fear of the Supernatural. Fear that Lame Stream Media will make fun of more superstitions.

Pope John Paul said 'We have lost the sense of the supernatural". Ministryvalues is about reporting on the supernatural - the thing that makes religion and the catholic faith special and unique - and to us interesting.

Anonymous said...

Patrick is a bully who turns into a sniveling wimp when faced with his own methods/tactics.

I actually enjoyed this.

ministryvalues.com said...

To Patrick ..I have made changes to my headline but I will let this "comment" from a reader at my site speak for the truth of my article.

"Without Medjugorje coming to my female consciousness 17 years ago, I would not
be a devout Catholic today and I also am still going strong! I have had the
same reaction to the negativity of the men listed in this article. They have
done untold damage to souls who could have benefited from the messages of love,
penance and prayer, prayer, prayer, especially those who are not Catholic but
listen to the programs /read the materials these men are involved with. I am
not so sure it has to do with sexism, but a closed-mindedness which is damaging
Our Lady's attempts to reach souls. They will each need to account for this
even though they are doing great work for the Lord in other areas. I pray that
the Lord will remove the scales from their eyes!"

Patrick Coffin said...

Wow. Steve, I have no idea what your pelvic comment is supposed to mean, and it doesn't matter. I forgive you. But stop digging. What matters is that snark is not listed along with the other fruits of the Holy Spirit, for a reason. And yet snark -- along with testy, puerile, and thin-skinned overreactions to basic facts -- comprises one of the many other "fruits of Medjugorje." Be at peace and wait for the Ruini Commission to roll out the final, definitive answer from the Holy See. Please.

Over and definitely out of this Time Vampire topic,

Patrick

Margie said...

I guess the big question is this: would (will) Medjugorje supporters still support the apparition if (when) the Vatican says it is false and should be surpressed? If the answer is "yes" then that should be the answer on whether or not it is legitimate and who is behind it.

- Margie

ministryvalues.com said...

to coffin.. hit and run your specialty.

by the way the pelvic comment I thought you would get it

You will write/talk about pelvic issue tomorrow, the next day, and the next..

"A fanatic is a man who can't change his mind and won't change the subject."

-- Winston Churchill

Margie said...

Margie

Steve, I'm just jumping in here, but let me ask you this point blank: if the Vatican says the apparition is false and should be supressed, will you then desist from championing Medjugorje?

I'm curious here, since you use the word "fanatic" above.

- Margie

Patrick Archbold said...

Let me speak to the "truth" of your article. Everything that you said about me is demonstrably false. Yet you stick by it.

I am not part of a cabal. I choose not to discuss because I don't think I can advance the discussion. I have nothing to say and all it causes is the bats to come out of the belfry. I have absolutely no responsibility to write about it. None.

You made a number of other demonstrably false accusations that you refuse to retract.

If you are an honest man, you will retract your post and offer an apology.

If not, you are not.

Either way, I am done with this conversation and I am done with you and your ilk.

ministryvalues.com said...

To margie,,

I will give you my honest answer..I have written about this before.

As we know the Bishop at Mostar who oversees medjugorje has not been in favor of the alleged apparitions yet the seers continued to say "we see what we see."

The Bishop could not identify or prove fraud or hoax and so the belief in the apparitions went on. Now that medjugoreje is a world wide phenomena its authenticity has been placed in the hands of the Vatican.

If the medjugorje gets a negative ruling two things will happen for me.

First, I will abide by what the Church says completely and if they say I can't write about it I will not (at least not from a Catholic prospective) I will absolutely not make any attempts to say the Church is wrong - totally pointless. Now, secondly, if the the seers continue to say "We see what we see" I will by lying if I told you I would not be interested in taking a peek at the messages and following the story - as I have said a number of times - Medjugorje is a great unsolved mystery that is interesting to me.

The great thing is that Medjugorje has brought me back to the Catholic Church in a deep, lasting and meaningful way. Medjugorje and Our Lady, for me, have completed their mission no matter what the Vatican rules. I am at peace with that.

Special things have happened to me - adoration is a part of my life now. I feel the hand of Christ when I am in the confession booth. It is beautiful and freeing. Medjugorje every day reminds us to pray for our Shepherds because they have been picked by "My Son" I see our priests much differently. My bishop drives me crazy but he has been picked by Jesus Christ.

Medjugorje has helped me understand the true humble ministry of Jesus Christ - for me -peace peace and only peace. Put God in the first place in our lives. Medjugorje is a sanctuary away from so many things ...

Importantly Medjugorje is also about "secrets" quite honestly it is probably where the Vatican will have its problems..I have my own problems with the secrets but I have reconciled with that. If Medjugorje is ruled against or the secrets do not unfold, I will still be forever thankful for the messages and the six seers. They/it/Our Lady have put me back on a path to eternity and towards my salvation.

Medjugorje helped me find peace and beauty in the Catholic Church.

Margie said...

Steve, thank you for your honest answer here. One follow up-- do you believe the following messages are from Our Lady:

The Virgin added: 'It is you who are divided on this earth. The Muslims and the Orthodox, like the Catholics, are equal before my Son and before me, for you are all my children."

"All religions are equal before God."

Both messages were recorded in 1981 and can be found testimony by the "seers" by Fr Ljubic and Fr Kraljevic. Do those messages coincide with Catholic teaching?

- Margie

ministryvalues.com said...

to Margie

This is an issue for a lot of people but not for me. The first sentence speaks to my heart and my intellect. People either get the point or they don;t.

"Tell this priest, tell everyone, that it is you who are divided on earth."

this next sentence - again controversial - but for me it is greatly hopeful - "you are all my children" - i love that...If some don;t well then ok.

"The Muslims and the Orthodox, for the same reason as Catholics, are equal before my Son and me. You are all my children. Certainly, all religions are not equal, but all men are equal before God, as St. Paul says. "

If Catholics reject "you are all equal before my son and me" then ok. It speaks to me

This next sentence is important to me as well.

"It does not suffice to belong to the Catholic Church to be saved, but it is necessary to respect the commandments of God in following one's conscience."

one thing to keep in mind ..do not take what I have represented are 'Our Ladys" words --I have gotten this from reliable sources..

also this is all Vatican II correct, but I have said repeatedly I am no theologian.. but look up "Lumen Genitum"

Elizabeth said...

Margie,

Bingo! Good question to pose to Steve regarding the "Virgin Mary" stating that all religions are equal before God.

No response yet from Steve?

Elizabeth

ministryvalues.com said...

to Margie,

to be clear.. you have the wrong quote about "all religions are equal"

all religions are NOT equal....read above

Margie said...

Steve - I got the quote(s) right. They were two separate ones at two separate times.

The fact that you say: "If Catholics reject "you are all equal before my son and me" then ok. It speaks to me" is exactly why this apparition is false. You are saying "Catholics may believe one thing, but the apparition says another". An apparition can NOT contradict the doctrines of the church. Regardless of the warm-fuzzies you get, it is no substitute for the truth.

Mormons get warm-fuzzies after reading the Book of Mormon, a so-called apparition from the "Angel Moroni" which "speaks to them". If you cannot use church dogma as the guide and lithmus test to judge whether something is true, then you are supceptible to anything, including the great deceiver.

- Margie

ministryvalues.com said...

to Margie.
I have spoken with Mark Marivalle a renowned Marianologist. He has sat on apparition investigations for the Vatican I have interviewed him. He says Medjugorje is doctrinally sound.

From my first post I have said I am not a theologian perhaps you are. But I do know this is not the place to sort all that out.

I will say Our Lady said "All men are equal before God it is you on earth that are divided"

Let me ask you a question. How do you feel about that statement?

ministryvalues.com said...

do you think if a Moslem loves God, has peace in his/her heart and obeys the commandments salvation is possible for a moslem".. FOr a Jew?

I don;t mind saying - I think they do. Our Lady thinks they do. So does Vatican II... so does the Catholic Church.
We all are equal before God's eyes. It is you on earth that are divided. .. sounds good to me and Vatican II

Margie said...

Steve - no, you don't know what Our Lady thinks on the subject, because she has never stated anything on it. The church has: Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus. To answer your question, it is irrelevant on "how I feel" on certain "messages" from this so-called apparition, because I feel strongly against the ones that contradict the church. Incidentally, you argue the same way Jehova's witnesses do; they pick key bible passages and say, "how do you feel about this?" etc, even though they are completely wrong about the other ones.

As a Catholic woman, I do not care what some Marianologist says if it is in contradiction to church doctrine. And you have proven our point here on the subject. You care more about this apparition than the church, and thus your immortal soul. and this is sad. very sad.

- Margie

ministryvalues.com said...

margie

Medjugore does not contradict Catholic doctrine. The bishop of Mostar does not even say that..

I dont know where you are getting you information.
I get my information directly from a leading worldwide expert who I spoke with.

A man who is asked by the Vatican to investigate apparitions is somebody we can look to as an authority and if we can not then this conversation will not go very far..

The problem with Medjuorje is not doctrine but rather it is about whether or not something supernatural is occurring..By the way Medjugorje is in error from the view point of SSPX or other break away traditionalist Catholic groups which reject Vatican II

I will say it one more time Medjugorje is not in error

Elizabeth said...

Dear Ministryvalues.com:

First of all, pardon my uncharitable reference, but Mark Marivalle is a layman and an apparition-chaser. He may have a degree or two but he doesn't officially advise the Vatican on anything. What an absurd statement. You say that his opinion is that all the statements made at Medjugore are consistent with Catholic doctrine? That makes me even more concerned about him than I already was. He sounds and promotes himself as an expert but he makes me uncomfortable.

Aside from that, there are several incorrect statements you've made in your posts directed at Margie. I'll just mention a couple.

1) SSPX does not reject Vatican II. That's just uninformed propoganda you're repeating.

2) You have repeatedly referred to Vatican II as a separate authority from the Catholic Church. Believe this, Vatican II is not the Deposit of Faith. The Catholic Church is, the Magisterium is. Vatican II is simply the most recent council, which DID NOT create any new dogmas or doctrines. I'm guessing you're "interpreting" some documents in the way that fits your needs. Unfortunately, that's the problem with Vatican II documents. But I digress...

As Margie points out, it does sound as if you are relying an awful lot on what speaks to you, how this or that makes you feel. If you don't look to the Church for your truth, you're easily led astray.

ministryvalues.com said...

elisabeth you and I disagree on Dr. Miravalle and SSPX..and I am pretty sure I am not about to change your mind.

like I said I am no theologian .. I really can't help on this..

my point of my article and all this is still the same..

Medjugorje needs to be discerned ...The catholic opinion makers I have encountered believe they need to protect the faithful.. I just have a lot more confidence in peoples ability to make up their own minds.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Excellent work, Agent Archbold. We member of the Brotherhood of Conspiratorial Darkness salute you.

Mark Shea
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
So typical from the self anointed clique back slappers while never acknowledging their personal errors in reporting....esp. the very foundation of authority on the matter in question. Shea had continued to repeat to the public as some kind of point to make against those who tried to correct him and were banned, the mistaken info that in the case of Medj. the local bishop has spoken and that's the current decision. That in itself is purposefully leading the faithful against something that is being studied in an unprecedented protected way by the Vatican. In THIS case, it's NOT the local bishop in authority over the phenomena itself. It's pretty bad to set yourself as some kind of Catholic authority to be looked to for correct info while denigrating persons involved in this cause whom you've never met nor care to meet, but what is worse is knowingly misinforming others in order to keep yourself within your selected little clique of naysayers' approval. Truth should always come first. I think those converts who still have problems with understanding the mystical portions of the Church, and often state that they just don't care about it while still putting forth their ignorant statements continue to look not just ignorant but uncharitable as well in their approach to current seers being examined by far more acceptable and charitable experts of our Church. IOW, the faithful public should take the "advice" from such limited bloggers and don't make them into some kind of "star" cult types. Their personally chosen topics often emphasize against that approach when it comes to clergy....they ought then to apply their own instruction to their readers towards their own little cliques of self righteousness!

Unknown said...

Ok, I don't have a problem with anyone reserving their opinion on any apparition if it is not approved by the Church. After all, The Church is all we have in these matters. Obedience is key. However, to follow any apparition is not bad as long as discernment is used. I follow both Medjugorje and Garabandal, each of which has not been approved and the local Bishops have not very supportive. While I am careful on anything of this nature, we can't just turn a blind eye. Jesus has been coming to us for 2000 years in this manner to help us in our belief. He knows we are doubting Thomas's to a certain degree. The person he has entursted the most in this endeavor is his Blessed Mother. To not pay attention to apparitions, especailly the approved ones, would be folly. Why would God allow it if there was not an important message to be given. Todays apparitions remind me of the disciples on the road to Emmaus, did not their hearts burn with desire for the Lord. And he revealed himself at the end. In the end, discernment is key. Trust in God and allow him to talk to your heart. In the end he will reveal himself.

Anonymous said...

why all this unfriendly discussion on the authenticity of MEDJUGORJE....neither you nor I have proof of these apparitions......the promised LASTING INDESTRUCTABLE SIGN will be proof enough....or not.....in the meantime let the people go and convert, fast, pray etc..and change the world in the process....TO GOD BE THE GLORY

paladin said...

Steve,

First: thank you for the kind words. Second: I appreciate the fact that you approach the alleged apparitions at Medjugorje (and concomitant details) with strong zeal; it obviously means a great deal to you, and you've spent a good deal of time and effort and personal energy into it. I don't want anything I say to detract from (or disparage) that.

That being said... are you aware of the fact that many false Marian apparitions (and other apparitions) have not simply "gone quietly into the night" after their condemnations by their local bishops? Consider the false apparition of Necedah, WI; it's been condemned in the strongest possible terms, and the adherents (after years of warnings) are excommunicated, but the so-called "shrine" still exists, and it still has quite the following... by people whose defenses of the shrine (and of the original so-called "seer", Mary Ann Van Hoof) mirror your own defenses, almost EXACTLY. I do not offer this as a "proof"; rather, I offer it as a word of caution, to show that sincerity and devotion, and even select "good fruits" (many conversions, and very many returns of sinners to the Sacraments and to pious devotions [such as the Holy Rosary] were due to Necedah; did you know that?) do not establish the veracity of any given alleged "apparition". Granted, Necedah (when the details are known--some of which ranged from the ridiculous to the disturbing) was easier to discern than were others; but if those details are not known (or if they are hidden by sympathisers), it can be quite easy to be swept away by the sincere devotion of true-believers... whether those believers are in error, or not. (At least one friend of mine is utterly convinced that the Bishops were simply wrong about Necedah, and that the Pope would overturn the verdict if he knew about it... which presupposes that [against all odds] he *didn't* know!.)

Re: Dr. Mark Miravalle... I'm afraid I have to share Elizabeth's concerns. He's certainly an enthusiast, but his enthusiasm seems to have led him to be rather less critical of "popular Marian devotions" than he might otherwise be; one clear example seems to be his exuberant use of the "Our Lady of All Nations" prayer in which Our Lady is referenced as she "who once was Mary"--but this (ill-advised) phrase was prohibited by Archbishop Angelo Amato of the CDF... and I was left wondering why Dr. Miravalle couldn't have "seen that one coming", so to speak, since the phrase is nonsensical and bizarre. Beyond this, his own defenses of Medjugorje have strayed into outright error (references available on request; I'd have to dig them up from home, and it might take a few daye to get the time to do so). I'd be a bit hesitant to use him as a corroborative source.

As it stands: the seers and "spiritual directors" and on-the-ground producers of materials for Medjugorje would have a great deal more credibility with me if they obeyed their bishop (who forbade the publishing of such materials, and whose publishing is forbidden by canon law (Canon 824ff), and humbly awaited any possible decision of the Holy See (while obeying the decision of their local ordinary).

Anonymous said...

Who is Fr Groeshel ? And what is an 'expert on miracles' ?

Ever urs

Igmoramous, who thanks the goddesses of good fortune she don't live in the new Eden - centre of Creation - the US.

Trish

ministryvalues.com said...

To Paladin

It is important to accept the significance that a Roman Catholic Cardinal and author/editorial editor of the Catholic rule book that sits on every priest's desk in the world has invited seers into his Church. We get nowhere when we look at "other" apparitions that have no ecclesiastical support .. Medjugorje is different - right now - who knows what will happen.

here is the problem
people say Pope JPII "protected" Medjugorje others say "Humbug" BS - "show me the money"

people say Schonborn a friend of the Pope invited seer into his Cathedral.
others say "He supports gay marraige (he does not)they say he is disobedient to the local bishop!

People say Mark Marivalle is esteemed and has had private meeting with Popes and sat on investigation committees
Other say he is a dupe and an apparition chaser

What is the point of all this. No one is going to be convinced.

I see millions of people find something good in Medjugorje.

And with that I encounter a "force" that says "NO!" "Wait!" yet give no basis for their demands - no proof of hoax. If there was fraud Medjugorje would be a distant memory.

Why should I wait? what is there to be afraid of?

To me it comes down to "Do you believe in the supernatural or not" I do.

For those who don't believe deeply that the supernatural is real in today's modern times it seems that they all run to the find their faith in the world of "culture wars" - it is what moves people. (often it is the emotion of hate confused as something else)

let me give an example

Diane K. (she of Te-Deum) asked me on her open combox -now keep in mind between my site - ministryvalues.com with over 100 comments.. tons of comments here, tons on Mr. Shea's site. Ministryvalues.com has had over 8,000 page views in the last two days an enormous discussion/fight has occurred and Diane only question to me. all that mattered to her was:

"What is your position of birth control?"

I gave her a long heartfelt answer. Her response "it is not clear what you said" - no "soup for you" comments closed BAMM!! I couldn't beleive it. g=Go to her site and read it for yourself.

To paraphrase my answer about birth control, not that anybody should care - "It should be between the sinner and the confession box")

Medjugorje is known as the confessional to the world. Medjugorje gets people into the confession box then things begin to take care of themselves.

I refuse to think of my faith in terms of my college aged daughters use of birth control.

Our Lady asks us to seek peace in the heart - peace peace and only peace. Put God in the fist place.. I work on this everyday.

But if that's where Diane K's want's to go with her faith then so be it.

Drina said...

Well, now that you've brought up the birth control issue on here as well, I'll ask this: what kept you from saying right out that the Church teaches that artificial birth control is immoral, evil and sinful? And that you fully respect and adhere to the Church's teachings? A person's guilt is between them Christ, or the confessor in persona Christi, sure, but it seems that Church teaching is fairly black and white here.

You're birth control argument is not helping your Medjugorje argument. at. all.

ministryvalues.com said...

by the way.

Regarding the "cabal" controlling the dialog
Greg Kandra - weighed in on his site with an article about my piece - comments closed

Mark Shea - I have been banned on his site (after i think my second comment)

Patrick Coffin stopped in on this site for a minute - Hit and run artist- he is like trying to engage a water spider in a conversation - basically everybody is too stupid or crazy for him. One way street.

I sent the Archbold brothers a long email this morning thanking them for keeping the comments open. I also said I would communicate that indeed the Archbolds and CMR have been fair and balanced with Medjugorje that they have not "condemed it."
I did say they are part of the gate keeper mentality with there position of talking about everything except - but that is certainly there freedom.

New Advent Kevin Knight.. I wish he would show his face but he is a chicken - He is perhaps the #1 reason my article was written . He and Patrick Madrid ambushed me on their blogs/sites by posting an article about me and an article I wrote called "Medjugorje is missing its wizard"

Madrid wrote an article about me and refused to link to my story he was referring to. Then New Advent put Madrid's article on their site. He also refused to link to my article. Conspiratorial? who knows? smear job yes. Unethical absolutely.

stephen ryan
Publisher
ministryvalues.com

Drina said...

By the way, are you going to answer my question two comments up? And as far as your "not that anybody should care" comment goes, I think people *should* care about your answer re: birth control. If you can't clearly state your adherence to Church teaching regarding a simple, clear-cut matter like birth control, why should anyone be influenced by what you say regarding more complex issues such as the validity of Medjugorje? It isn't clear "where you're at" so to speak. This doesn't make you a bad person, but it seems that it would raise questions in people's minds about your understanding of these matters, and rightly so.

ministryvalues.com said...

to drina

it seems I am always answering the questions. I hope this is not "gotcha" which is what Diane K was trying to play.

My position on birth control is that it should be between the sinner and the confessional booth. After this crazy couple days I will be spending time with my confessor overtime this weekend. I will again ask for his advice.

The reality is I have a college aged daughter - she knows I go to church now, but I let my wife and her work that out. I am not going to tasor them.


THIS IS FOR ME IMPORTANT:
I have said many times - The church needs longer lines at the confession booth and spending less time talking about the voting booth.

Medjugorje is known as the confessional of the world. People confess at Medjugorje.. Without Medjugorje I don't go to confession - this is the miracle of Medjugorje.

Medjugorje changes hearts first - then behavior follows..

Today there is too much emphasis on changing behavior first. It is like "Stop taking birth control and then you will be a good Catholic" It is all backwards.

Medjuogjre says "Look here - this is the way to My son's heart. This is the way to finding peace in the heart . Put God first in your life. Here is the path". Then from the heart we begin to follow the Catholic faith and understand its richness and beauty. More confession that's my answer. I dont want to demand that my daughter "adhere" (i hate that word) I want her to love the faith and go to confession from the heart.

ministryvalues.com said...

remember
confession delivers us precisely from sin and from satan..

Anonymous said...

what a bunch of loud mouths on both sides of this issue. for pete's sake practice some charity and just shut up. go to confession all of you.

Drina said...

By saying that birth control should be between the sinner and the confession booth, do you mean that birth control is possibly OK in certain circumstances to be determined by a person and their confessor or do you mean that it is a sin and ought to be confessed by a person to their confessor? This isn't a "gotcha" and you didn't answer my question. Why not state the teaching of the Church, which IS that artificial birth control is wrong, and that you follow the Church?

By the way, you can say birth control is immoral without condemning all who use it to hell. We can say actions are immoral while still not knowing the state of a person's soul. Ignorance and other factors can mitigate one's guilt.

Your other remarks are unrelated to the birth control question, but obviously fine if they are important to you. How much does the church talk about the voting booth, because I have yet to sit in a church where the priest or deacon giving the homily talks about how one should vote. And you're right about one thing at least - confession lines should be longer.

I don't think your answer to the birth control question has to be about your daughter or at all personal like you're making it.

Anonymous said...

From stumbling onto this site and reading all this commenst I would say that Mr Archibold and several of the other commenters who are opposed or not yet decided on Med have written in extremely nasty and venemous language and tones. Why so vile? Why so attacking? Very unimpressed. No, I'm not a Med supporter or detractor. I'll wait to see what the Vatican says but in teh meantime, my focus is on Our Lord.

ministryvalues.com said...

drina,

I mean to say birth control is a sin and should be confessed.

by the way last election the sunday before election my pastor said during the homily basically it was a sin to vote deomcratic. he was taken to task outside the steps ..not by me.

Elizabeth D said...

Not only should contraception be confessed, we should be against it publicly and we should not be cooperators in providing contraception; in our time public defense of our religious freedom including through politics is required. We are not just Catholic in the confessional, but in the whole of our life.

The length of this comment thread (which really calls for popcorn) suggests to me Diane made the right call in closing her comment box!

ministryvalues.com said...

by the way.

Regarding the "cabal" controlling the dialog
Greg Kandra - weighed in on his site with an article about my piece - comments closed

Mark Shea - I have been banned on his site (after i think my second comment)

Patrick Coffin stopped in on this site for a minute - Hit and run artist- he is like trying to engage a water spider in a conversation - basically everybody is too stupid or crazy for him. One way street.

I sent the Archbold brothers a long email this morning thanking them for keeping the comments open. I also said I would communicate that indeed the Archbolds and CMR have been fair and balanced with Medjugorje that they have not "condemed it."
I did say they are part of the gate keeper mentality with there position of talking about everything except - but that is certainly there freedom.

New Advent Kevin Knight.. I wish he would show his face but he is a chicken - He is perhaps the #1 reason my article was written . He and Patrick Madrid ambushed me on their blogs/sites by posting an article about me and an article I wrote called "Medjugorje is missing its wizard"

Madrid wrote an article about me and refused to link to my story he was referring to. Then New Advent put Madrid's article on their site. He also refused to link to my article. Conspiratorial? who knows? smear job yes. Unethical absolutely.

stephen ryan
Publisher
ministryvalues.com

regina4u said...

"OUR LADY of AMERICA " pray for us.

regina4u said...

"OUR LADY of AMERICA " pray for us.

Foxfier said...

I leave for a few days and....

/sigh

Well, I got maybe a page-down or two into the comments and stopped reading. Doesn't matter.

I have found that most of the Catholics who read me on a regular basis have made up their minds, either pro or con, and anything I say on the matter is likely to be misconstrued and generate much more heat than light.

Thank you for this.
I'm not entirely sure about all the various apparitions that have been approved as worthy of belief, let alone those that haven't. Doesn't mean I disbelieve them, like the claim "the moon is blue cheese," but doesn't mean I think they're a statement of fact.

paladin said...

Steve,

Sorry for the delay; I don't mean to neglect your comment! I'm out of town for a few days, but I'll return within a few more.

ministryvalues.com said...

"anything I say on the matter is likely to be misconstrued and generate much more heat than light."

Until the "doubters, skeptics" understand that Medjugorje is the third most visited Catholic "Shrine" in the world behind guadalupe and Lourdes it is difficult to have a conversation when the doubters continue to insist Medjugorje is an obscure "private revelation. "
Until skeptics see that Medjugorje is an unsolved
religious mystery that has reached MILLIONS of Catholics, it will be difficult to have a discussion.
Skeptics trump card is always "private revelations don't matter anyway so why talk about it in the first place.

Forget that Medjugorje is an "apparition" or private revelation it is a meaningless description in certain ways.

Medjugorje is a gigantic religious movement/phenomena - regardless of belief and that is the story the skeptics can;t seem to grasp.

The brain freeze that skeptics have is that Medjugorje now has nothing to do with "believe or not believe" it is a real breathing thing - the genie is out of the bottle and they just don;t get this.
Catholic reporters/ opinion makers fail to grasp this distinction.

ministryvalues.com said...

Why my charge that Catholic reporting on medjugorje is weak is not a baseless charge. In the past year the most objection, informative and balanced reporting on Medjugorje has come from ABC News and BBC - lame stream media.

Expensive productions about Medjugorje were broadcast on prime time.

Where was the National Catholic Register when it came to reporting on the thirty year anniversary Medjugorje?

Mike Reiner, new York, usa said...

Not really sure about Medjugorie, but I will say after reading the comments here and on the other blogs initially referenced I am very unimpressed and completely amazed at the lack of charity being exhibited by these bloggers and their readers. You should all be ashamed of yourselves.

ministryvalues.com said...

"you should be ashamed of yourselves"

Over the years, I have developed an unscientific theory about the internet and comboxs.

Those who they "You should be ashamed of yourselves" (thrust me - there is a whole tribe out there trolling the internet looking to strike) have nothing to say.

Stephen Ryan
Publisher
ministryvalues.com

ministryvalues.com said...

ministryvalues.com said...

let's try this one more time....

"you should be ashamed of yourselves"

Over the years, I have developed an unscientific theory about the internet and comboxs.

Those who say "You should be ashamed of yourselves" (trust me - there is a whole tribe out there trolling the internet looking to strike) have nothing to say.

Stephen Ryan
Publisher
ministryvalues.com

Foxfier said...

It is kind of the "everybody does it" level of argument, isn't it?

ministryvalues.com said...

Prominent Priest Blogger, Fr. Longenecker, has weighed in on this story and his experience at Medjugorje.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/standingonmyhead/2012/04/my-medjugorje-story.html#comment-34007

Stephen Ryan

paladin said...

Apologies in advance for the length of this (in 3 parts); these sorts of things don't lend themselves to sound-bytes (and I'm not known for my brevity, anyway! :) )...

Steve wrote, in reply to my comment:

To Paladin: It is important to accept the significance that a Roman Catholic Cardinal and author/editorial editor of the Catholic rule book that sits on every priest's desk in the world has invited seers into his Church.

Well... I see no clear way to discern what that significance IS, exactly; not only is the significance unknown and hard to quantify (e.g. how would one evaluate the Cardinal's acts of personal piety? They can be mistaken/misplaced, just as ours can be...), but even if it were "significant" in some way, I see no clear way (barring further evidence) to tell HOW it is significant (e.g. significantly good, or significantly bad, or relatively insignificant for anyone but him, etc.)

Do you see the problem? Unless we grant your premise (i.e. that Medjugorje is valid and good and wholesome and "necessary" [with needed qualifiers understood]), we can't decide about the goodness (or even the significance) of the Cardinals, actions, at all! I'm not saying that the Cardinal would be culpable for any error, necessarily; but even Saints have been misled by various spiritual causes.

We get nowhere when we look at "other" apparitions that have no ecclesiastical support

I mentioned the other, unapproved apparitions (and their effects) for at least four reasons:

1) to show a clear parallel between Medjugorje (an apparition which has been unequivocally condemned by all the bishops of the particular diocese, to this day) and Necedah (an apparition which has been unequivocally condemned by all the bishops of the particular diocese, to this day).

2) to show that popularity, strength of devotion, number of devotees, etc., simply don't tell us much that's of any use. True works of God can be wildly popular, or they can be extremely local/provincial (or even actively unpopular/persecuted); counterfeit "works of God" can be wildly popular, or they can be extremely local/provincial (or even actively unpopular/persecuted). Given only that we see popularity, however could one tell the difference between "true" and "false"? It's simply not possible, without further information.

3) to show that even "good fruits" are not an unerring proof of the validity of an alleged apparition, since Necedah (a demonstrably false apparition) also had fruits identical to those at Medjugorje (increased devotion, people coming back to the Sacraments, lukewarm souls becoming fervent, conversions, etc.).

4) to show that NOTHING--not even the most overwhelming apparition/locution--excuses direct disobedience to those who have rightful jurisdiction... ever. Such disobedience was, and is to this day, rampant in Necedah; and it was, and is (forgive me), rampant among the on-the-ground promoters of Medjugorje. That simply must stop.

Medjugorje is different - right now - who knows what will happen.

My dear fellow, NO ONE knows what "will happen"; we can only know what HAS happened, and go from there. The alleged apparitions have been condemned in the strongest possible terms by two successive bishops of Mostar (the diocese in Bosnia/Herzegovina in which Medjugorje is found), and the local supporters (including the publishers of Medjugorje devotional materials in the diocese) have flatly disobeyed, ignored, and even assaulted them. I hope you can understand how this doesn't leave a good impression on those who wish to discern the truth of the matter?

(cont'd)

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

people say Pope JPII "protected" Medjugorje others say "Humbug" BS - "show me the money"

And I say that the personal opinions of Blessed John Paul II (and he made quite clear that they were personal opinions), one way or the other, are quite irrelevant... and the Holy Father would be the first to say so.

people say Schonborn a friend of the Pope invited seer into his Cathedral.

See above; I'm afraid this settles nothing at all, even if it were provably true.

others say "He supports gay marraige (he does not)they say he is disobedient to the local bishop!

And again: even if all counts were true, it'd be irrelevant to the point at hand. Evil supporters do not invalidate an apparition, and saintly private supporters do not authorise it.

People say Mark Marivalle is esteemed and has had private meeting with Popes and sat on investigation committees; Other say he is a dupe and an apparition chaser

See above; this is utterly beside the point.

What is the point of all this. No one is going to be convinced.

I agree, insofar as this specific point goes.

I see millions of people find something good in Medjugorje.

Perhaps... but that's a very vague (and somewhat conclusion-assuming) way of putting things; millions can "find something good" in the death camps of Auschwitz (e.g. St. Maximilian Kolbe), but this has no direct bearing on the location/alleged apparition.

And with that I encounter a "force" that says "NO!" "Wait!" yet give no basis for their demands - no proof of hoax.

My dear fellow... surely you know that you have things rather backwards? The Church does not say, "Unless an alleged apparition is proven to be false, feel free to promote it and jump in with both feet!" Rather, She urges caution... especially in matters which are not necessary for salvation (e.g. any private revelations).

If there was fraud Medjugorje would be a distant memory.

(*sigh*) I wish it were that simple, friend! But Necedah is not a distant memory, nor is the false "apparition" at Bayside, nor is atheism, nor is the pseudo-gnosticism given new life by Dan Brown (cf. the "Da Vinci Code", and other such rubbish). We fallen humans, with our weakened wills and darkened intellects and perpetual assaults by the Father of Lies, are rather prone to cling to falsehood when it suits us.

(cont'd)

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

Why should I wait? what is there to be afraid of?

Personally, I wait because there are only three main possibilities, re: Medjugorje:

1) Medjugorje is true (but not mandatory for belief, even if approved).
2) Medjugorje is a hoax/mistake/delusion (i.e. false, with merely natural explanation)
3) Medjugorje is diabolical (i.e. false, with preternatural explanation).

Given that it is not required, and that two of the three lead to disaster, and that the local bishops have condemned both the apparitions and the behaviour of the key seers/promoters, I find that to be reason aplenty to keep my distance.

To me it comes down to "Do you believe in the supernatural or not" I do.

Come now, friend! That's a false dilemma: "Either one believes in Medjugorje, or one does not believe in the supernatural!" That is simply not so; many (such as I) believe completely in the supernatural (i.e. the agency of God in the world), but do not believe that each and every alleged apparition must be supernatural (i.e. of God).

Diane K. (she of Te-Deum) asked me on her open combox [...] all that mattered to her was: "What is your position of birth control?"

Hm. I read the thread, and--while I certainly won't speak for Diane--I do think that other things mattered to her, besides that; it wasn't the "only" thing about which she was concerned. As to why she brought up the idea in the first place... I won't presume to guess.

To paraphrase my answer about birth control, not that anybody should care - "It should be between the sinner and the confession box")

Well... that's true, in the strict and limited sense that such a matter, when involving a specific person, should not be shouted from the roof-tops; but that's hardly the end of the matter (as I think you've already said, when [later] you clarified that such activity was sinful). Artificial Contraception is always and everywhere an objective moral evil, even if the culpability of any given person might be greater or lesser.

Medjugorje is known as the confessional to the world. Medjugorje gets people into the confession box then things begin to take care of themselves.

Any encouragement to get the faithful back to Holy Confession is, indeed, a great good. I would merely offer one main caution: even such an apparent good can become evil, if the "true faith" of those devotees is more firmly in the particular alleged apparition [e.g. Medjugorje] than in the Church, as such. I've heard Medjugorje devotees claim that, if Medjugorje were to be declared false by the Vatican, they would ignore the declaration entirely... and possibly even view the Pope as a heretic. I found that disturbing and insanely foolish.

Our Lady asks us to seek peace in the heart - peace peace and only peace. Put God in the fist place.. I work on this everyday.

That's commentable and good; so should everyone. But I'd gently suggest that no given alleged apparition has a "monopoly" on such true sentiments; they are true, and they would be true, even had no alleged apparitions/extraordinary events taken place at Medjugorje, or anywhere else. It's really not wise to suggest that one must accept thus-and-so apparition in order to embrace such a life-course.

ministryvalues.com said...

to paladin

thanks for the thoughtful response.
Mine will be shorter - a couple points

1. I say
"And with that I encounter a "force" that says "NO!" "Wait!" yet these people give no basis for their demands - no proof of hoax."

You say

"My dear fellow... surely you know that you have things rather backwards? "

I disagree with you on this.
People think Medjugorje is "miraculous" - Medjugojre converts people - it got me back to the Church and the confession booth. That is why it is important that all us don;t "wait". As I said earlier - Medjugorje and Our Lady already completed their mission with me no matter what the church rules. - Souls are at risk for those who wait (like mine)

2. Regarding Diane K.
100s of comments and thousands of words and all Diane K wanted to play was "gotcha". She wanted my answer on birth control...I answered her question in a heartfelt manner and then she cut me off. She is like the scribes and the pharisees during the time of Jesus.
Interesting the it come down that - to the issue of sex 2000 years later.
The pharisees tried to play gotcha with Jesus - with the prostitute - They thought (like Diane K) they had Jesus boxed into a corner over the sins of the prostitute. jesus then said - "He without sin throw the first stone " The scribes were at a loss for words and then quickly closed their comboxs and went home.

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

thanks for the thoughtful response. Mine will be shorter

:) I don't blame you.

[Steve]
And with that I encounter a "force" that says "NO!" "Wait!" yet these people give no basis for their demands - no proof of hoax.

[Paladin]
My dear fellow... surely you know that you have things rather backwards?

[Steve]
I disagree with you on this.


All right; but do remember that we need to base our positions on reason, and not merely on sentiment and emotion (however intense it might be). I do not say that emotion is bad; far from it! But I do say that emotions are simply not designed to "lead" us anywhere... and we are only justified in "following our hearts" if our hearts happen to be going in the correct direction! We can only confirm that by consulting with sober reason and logic... which means that we're not really "following our hearts" at all; it's simply the case that both we and our hearts are (or should be) following our reason, all along.

People think Medjugorje is "miraculous"

Some do. But I'm afraid that solves nothing, since they may well be mistaken. Many have been the cases where humans thougt something to be a "miracle" (in the supernatural sense of the word), only to find later that they were wrong.

Medjugojre converts people - it got me back to the Church and the confession booth.

I don't at all wish to diminish that excellent result! But no apparition of any sort (approved, unapproved, or something in-between) is ever meant to take the place of one's faith in GOD, and God alone. Even the Blessed Mother, herself (who undeniably exists, even if all apparitions since the beginning of the Christian era were thrown out), exists only to point us to Her Divine Son, Jesus. No apparition should ever be seen as the sine qua non (i.e. "can't live without it, my faith crumbles if it crumbles") of our faith. Even the approved ones simply aren't designed to do that!

(cont'd)

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

That is why it is important that all us don;t "wait".

My friend, I beg you: do not be rash! We cannot allow our hearts to run away with our heads... which is all too easy for us humans to let happen. Our human hearts are fickle, and they can be utterly captivated by glamours and baubles (cf. Jeremiah 17:9). It's akin to saying, "I'm absolutely giddy over that new girl whom I met today; I've simply got to marry her, and marry her NOW!" Christian prudence will say, "Half a moment, friend! Slow down! If one's emotions are captivated, that is hardly the basis for a holy, stable, life-long marriage! If God truly means for her to be your bride, then a sober and calm discernment will bear that conclusion out... and a delay is necessary precisely BECAUSE we need to let our giddy intoxication wear off a bit, and sober up enough to think clearly. Do not let even the understandable and intoxicating excitement of a new romance make the solemn decision for you!" It's painfully hard to hit the "manual override" button in such circumstances; but that is precisely what we must do. Just so, in the case of your (admittedly beautiful) experience regarding Medjugorje.

As I said earlier - Medjugorje and Our Lady already completed their mission with me no matter what the church rules. - Souls are at risk for those who wait (like mine)

And that statement, friend, is what worries me the most. My wife, in fact, stumbled upon a book (I forget the title) which described a band of Christian missionaries who, with a fervent and child-like faith, spread the Gospel as they saw best. The complications came when they encountered a Catholic mission parish; the priest told them (politely) that they were already Christian, but the head missionary said, "No, the Spirit has told me that you are idolaters, and that you worship idols!" The priest tried to explain that the "idols" were actually Church statues used in worship of God, but the missionaries insisted that they were idols. "Bring them all out," the head missionary said, "and we'll do as Elijah did: if God sends down fire from heaven to burn them up, then they are idols!" The priest (bemusedly) brought out a few statues of the Blessed Virgin, etc... and the missionaries prayed... whereupon a fire burst from nowhere and consumed the statues completely! The priest (according to the story) "got very excited" and "went into the church to bring out the rest of the statues to be burned".

So... what do you think? Were the statues of the Blessed Virgin "idols"? After all: sincere and enthusiastic missionaries said so, and "power from on high" (supposedly) confirmed their testimony by burning up those statues; "signs and wonders" confirmed it, didn't they?

This is the moment of decision: the only possible way we know spiritual truth from error, ultimately, is to obey the voice of Christ speaking through the Church founded, protested, and infallibly guided by His Spirit (cf. Luke 10:16, John 16:13, 1 Timothy 3:15, etc.). We know that iconoclasm is a heresy, simply because Christ's Church formally condemned it (cf. 2nd Council of Nicaea). Otherwise, who are we to "fight fire from Heaven"? (See Revelation 13:13 for insight into that!)

(cont'd)

paladin said...

Steve,

When you refer to "Church rules" (and yes, I know you meant it in the sense of "comes down on the issue, one way or the other"), you refer to the very things which keep us from being utterly lost. They are not only important; they distinguish us from everything which is not of Christ! No... obedience leads to righteousness (cf. Romans 6:16, etc.), whereas disobedience leads to death (cf. Hebrews 4:11, etc.). This isn't something which we are free to take or leave, as we see fit (cf. Judges 21:25, etc.). It is precisely for the sake of the salvation of souls that we must cling to Peter and to obedience to him... because Christ appointed him as shepherd over us, and we can expect to meet the fate of straying sheep (e.g. torn apart by wolves, perhaps in sheep's clothing) if we do not follow and obey our shepherds. This is why disobedience alarms me so much, especially in "dramatic/sensational" phenomena such as this.

ministryvalues.com said...

Paladin,,

couple things
1. at Fatima "In the end MY heart will triumph." I see that manifestation at Medjugorje. Where do you see Our Lady's heart triumphing?

2.From your writing you reveal that you are not familiar with Medjugorje - A major component of Medjugorje are its LASTING
conversion. This is a decisive aspect to Medjugorje. It is something you need to understand.

Go to my site and read the comments...there are over 100 and you will see that there are many testimonies how they were converted by Medjugorje 10,20,years ago.

You are speculating I think you would be better off if you investigated for yourself.

Anonymous said...

Go fuck off. How's that for a combos comment

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

at Fatima "In the end MY heart will triumph. I see that manifestation at Medjugorje.

Could you clarify, a bit? What do you mean by "that manifestation"?

Where do you see Our Lady's heart triumphing?

Er... Our Lady *did* say that her heart would triumph "in the END", yes? It's not the end yet, methinks. Beyond that, I'm afraid the idea of "seeing her heart triumphing", while it's a beautiful devotional image (and which has great application in the hearts and minds of those who are devoted to her), doesn't settle anything. Anyone could make the same claim about anything at all, and there'd be no way to prove (or even clearly demonstrate) it, one way of the other.

From your writing you reveal that you are not familiar with Medjugorje

I'm not at all sure how you could make such a hasty jump to a conclusion on such scant data, friend; that's a bit rash, don't you think? I've studied the phenomenon, and the circumstances surrounding it, quite a bit. I don't claim to be an "expert"... though I'm not quite sure how anyone would qualify for that title, anyway.

A major component of Medjugorje are its LASTING conversion.

(??) Pardon me, but: where did I say that the conversions at Medjugorje were not "lasting"? I have little doubt that the new-found or newly-renewed faith of many people who experienced such conversion perdure, to this day. I specifically said that, despite such durable conversions (do you recall my comments about similar long-lasting conversions happening at Necedah, Bayside, and other false apparitions?), they prove nothing in particular about the authenticity/validity of the alleged apparition itself, since both approved (e.g. Fatima, Lourdes, Guadalupe, Akita, etc.) and condemned (e.g. Necedah, Bayside, Holy Love Ministries, etc.) apparitions can say the same. Given only that "we see lasting conversions", we cannot possibly distinguish between the valid and the invalid. Does that clarify?

Go to my site and read the comments...there are over 100 and you will see that there are many testimonies how they were converted by Medjugorje 10,20,years ago.

I never contested that. But see above; unless you're willing to say that all the condemned apparitions in the history of the world in which some people experineced (through the grace and mercy of God) genuine, enduring conversion must necessarily be genuine, then I'm not sure how else to explain this to you. Conversions are very good and relevant to the order of grace; but--logically speaking, and with respect to this particular logical point--they are simply not relevant.

You are speculating I think you would be better off if you investigated for yourself.

My dear chap: I assure you, I've investigated matters quite thoroughly (though I'm sure I'll investigate further, as time goes on); there's no need to assume ignorance on my part, simply because I don't embrace your own position, lock-step!

Let me offer a question of my own: given that the local promoters of Medjugorje are defying the bishop by ignoring his "cease-and-desist" orders on numerous counts (e.g. publishing spiritual materials without his express permission and against his prohibition, inciting the faithful to defy the bishop by attempting to receive the Sacraments from priests who were suspended/laicised, defaming the bishop in print, hearing Confessions in the context of Medjugorje "pilgrimages" despite the bishop's absolute prohibition against it, etc.), what do you make of all that? Do you approve? Do you condone? Do you diapprove? Do you condemn?

paladin said...

(P.S. Just ignore the anonymous drive-by troll at 10:16 PM.)

ministryvalues.com said...

to paladin

"In the end my heart will triumph"
what i mean by this is that salvation will best be found by finding Christ through the heart of Mary
Evangelical and protestants in many cases have corrupted the Christian faith with their emphasis on political agendas - They reject Our Lady and because of this they lose the path of peace.

Why i say Medjugorje is the manifestiation of this is because nowhere on earth do we see a movement where so many return to God through Our Lady's heart then we do at Medjugorje.
At Medjugorje, everybody who converts back to the faith does so through Our Lady's heart

I do not understand why more people do not see this.

paladin said...

Steve,

Well... to be brief... (*pause for gasps from those who know me*)

If the Blessed Virgin Mary is/was NOT appearing at Medjugorje, then the conversions must be due to something else (e.g. the sincere faith that the devotees brought with them, their true devotion to the true Mother of God, etc.). That is the main question, after all.

I'd also add: when speaking of "enduring" conversions, that has yet to be tested in the possible circumstance of the Vatican (or whatever competent authorities) making a decisive negative declaration about Medjugorje. I do worry about how many devotees would have their faith in Christ's Church survive such a blow.

ministryvalues.com said...

let's talk about the here and now.

people are converting at Medjugorje. they are finding Christ thought Mary's heart. They go to confession. MILLIONS

this is all good ...lets be happy that so many people are returning to the Catholic church

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

let's talk about the here and now.

My dear chap: that's precisely what we CANNOT (exclusively) do! "Those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it, (George Santayana)" and "This man began to build what he could not finish! (cf. Luke 14:28-30) both come to mind.

people are converting at Medjugorje.

Perhaps. Every sincere and authentic conversion is a glorious thing, regardless of whether the original apparition was false, or not.

they are finding Christ thought Mary's heart.

That may certainly be what they intend; but that is precisely what we need to discern: is it a true conversion to the TRUE Christ and the TRUE Mother of God, in and through the TRUE Church established by Christ (Whom we are morally obliged to obey: "If he will not listen even to the Church, then treat him as you would a tax-collector or heathen; what you bind on earth will be bound in Heaven, and what you loose on earth will be loosed in Heaven" [cf. Matthew 18:16-18]). Those who are led to prefer "some given apparition" to "obedience to Christ's Church" have been converted away to great evil, cloaked in the guise of "good".

As an example (which I think you, in particular, will appreciate): millions upon millions "give their hearts to Jesus" as the result of Protestant missionary work (including tens of millions of ex-Catholics in the USA, alone--they make up the second-largest non-Catholic Christian "denomination" in the USA, in fact). Do you regard the "conversion" of Catholics to Protestantism (or other types of Christianity, etc.) to be "a good thing"? Many of those people were lack-luster Catholics who couldn't have cared less about Jesus (before encountering Protestant missionaries), after all...

Do you see my point? Some types of "conversion", even though they contain SOME good, might prove to be an ultimate evil... if they eventually lead people away from the Church (and from obedience to Her rightful leaders), and from a greater good to a lesser one.

They go to confession. MILLIONS

That is a wonderful thing, to be sure. But this is not a sure demonstration of the validity of the alleged apparition; to believe otherwise would be to regress to a mere "appeal to popularity" (e.g. "so many people do it, so it must be right!"), which simply won't do. Remember that many of the false apparitions boasted such sincere conversions, etc., as well. You remember that, yes?

this is all good ...lets be happy that so many people are returning to the Catholic church

I am certainly happy about that, so far as it goes. I merely say that (as is the case with Necedah, Bayside, etc.), this really says nothing significant about the VALIDITY of the alleged apparition in the first place. No apparition (whether real or false, approved or condemned, etc.) is the ultimate point, after all. If it proves to be valid, then well and good: I will be the first to tell people to feel free to embrace it (or not) as they choose. If it proves to be invalid, I will be the first to warn people away from such a pernicious danger. In the meantime, I remain extremely concerned about the accounts of flagrant disobedience (sometimes attributed to the "Gospa" herself!) and incitement to disobey rightful authority. No valid apparition will ever do that.

ministryvalues.com said...

two things

1.do not be fooled by the loud claims of disobedience. The Vatican has spoken about this and of course they have started an investigation. Leave this one be.

2. I agree that many Protestants and evangelicals are in grave error. Much of their faith is based on "prosperity" gospels..
I am a strong beleiver that more, now than ever, because of the corruption of the ministry of Jesus Christ at the hands of the evangelicals we need Our Lady. -

the key toady is to see that Our Lady;s hearts triumphs . the key today is to find Christ through Our Lady;s heart because outside of Our Lady's heart and her path to Her son there may be no salvation.

paladin said...

Steve wrote:

do not be fooled by the loud claims of disobedience.

The volume has nothing to do with it, I assure you; I am not one to be impressed by drama or rhetorical window-dressing. Rather, I refer to several accounts in which the Bishop himself (hardly a propaganda agent outside of the situation) recounts (among many similar episodes) these accounts of the "Gospa" contradicting the direct authority of the Bishop (according to the diary of Vicka Marija, one of the alleged "visionaries"), in matters which are objectively certain (i.e. the fact that, when a bishop suspends a priest, his faculties absolutely cease to function, regardless of anyone's feelings on the matter, and even regardless of whether the bishop was just or unjust!):

1982, Jan. 20: "'The children asked what Rev. Ivica Vego and Rev. Ivan Prusina were to do now that they were thrown out of the Order. Our Lady answered: 'They are innocent. The bishop was harsh in his decision. They can stay.'"

[I hope I don't need to illustrate how this is disobedient... and how the alleged "Gospa" is fomenting taht disobedience to the rightful bishop of Mostar.]

1982, April 15: "Vicka asked Our Lady a question. 'Could you generally tell me everything about Ivica Vego and Ivan Prusina?' Our Lady smiled at first and then she said, 'They are innocent.' She repeated twice that: 'The bishop has made a mistake... let them remain at Mostar.... they can say Mass sometimes but may they be careful to stay away from attention until things calm down. They have no faults....'"

[This was in direct reaction to the Bishop suspending both Fr. Ivica Vego and Fr. Ivan Prusina. When a priest is suspended, he CANNOT offer the Holy Sacrifice; the ability to do so is suspended. Any suggestion that they could "say Mass sometimes" is provable nonsense.]

As such: unless you (or anyone else) are ready to claim that this account of the Bishop is substantially wrong, we seem to have cases where, according to the "seer's" own words, the "Gospa" is fomenting disobedience, and (even more remarkably) showing a striking ignorance of how Holy Orders work.

The Vatican has spoken about this and of course they have started an investigation. Leave this one be.

Friend, don't you see that you're not even following your own advice? When I say, "Do not rush into this--let the investigation go forth, and if it is approved, THEN embrace it", you reply that you see no reason to wait! You must choose one (wait and see in all things uncertain) or the other (embrace both the "apparition" and the fact that the "apparition" gave false and pernicious information/advice); the second course is insane... so I suggest that we both follow the first.

2. I agree that many Protestants and evangelicals are in grave error.

But do you not see that their sheer numbers would prove them "right", if we use your standard of "millions have come to faith"? That was my point: sheer numbers, and even sincere conversions and enthusiasm, do not prove anything about the point at hand (i.e. whether Our Lady actually appeared at Medjugorje, or not)!

Much of their faith is based on "prosperity" gospels.

Not in most cases; a minority of smaller communities do so, but it would be false to say that this is typical of Protestantism. And even if it were: it would not help your case. (See above.)

I am a strong beleiver that more, now than ever, because of the corruption of the ministry of Jesus Christ at the hands of the evangelicals we need Our Lady.

I agree. The very question, however, is this: is our Lady actually appearing at Medjugorje, or was that particular apparition false? Our Lady is true and good, no matter what the fate of Medjugorje! Does that clarify?

ministryvalues.com said...

we did an article on your concern a while back

On Medjugorje Disobedience - Bishop of Mostar's actions were ruled "Wrong and illegal"
http://ministryvalues.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1374&Itemid=125

the article is written by a phd student at Catholic University -

paladin said...

Steve,

Thank you for the reply; I'll investigate it further... but three questions come up, at first glance:

1) I'm not sure you quite understand how the specific mechanics of "suspension" (which is quite distinct from laicisation) work. Suspension of a priest's faculties is akin to a water company disconnecting someone's water supply because of delinquency in paying bills. One might accuse the company of being wrong, or even illegal (and both might be true, barring any further information), but the water does, in fact, remain OFF. If the owner of the house were to go up to the spigot and say, "the water was cut off unjustly; I shall get water, anyway!", they would still get NOTHING (save perhaps a few gurgling sounds) when they opened the tap! Now, the fellow might go to court, have the court find that the company was in the wrong, and have the court order the water re-started... but until that happens, no water will flow, at all. Does that clarify?

Just so, with the suspensions of Ivico Vega and Ivan Prusina; at the very instant they were suspended, they LOST THE POWER to consecrate the Eucharist, to absolve sins (save if someone were in danger of death), and to provide the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick (save if someone were in danger of death). That power is proper to the bishop; it "flows through the bishop" into the priests who serve as his deputies, and it can be turned on or off at the bishop's command. If a suspended priest appeals his case to higher authorities (e.g. the Congregation for Clergy, the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the Holy Father himself, etc.), and if those authorities overrule the bishop, well and good: the "water" would begin to flow again... but not unless/until that happened.

This is why the "Gospa's" comment about "they can say Mass sometimes, etc." was so absurd; she might as well have been saying that they "could still drink out of the disconnected water system, sometimes"; it simply wouldn't work! It's not a matter of "getting the water, but making authorities angry"; it's a matter of whether any water would FLOW at ALL! (N.B. It wouldn't!) As such: if this is a genuine quote from the "Gospa", then the "Gospa" has at least one provable falsehood attributable to her.

2) Msgr. Tutto (of London) seems to have nothing in particular to do with the situation; he's simply a commentator who offered his opinion (and not being even a canon lawyer, himself) about a situation which is now "locked down" as confidential. He's welcome to his opinion that the proceedings were "wrong and illegal", but since there is no way to corroborate his story... and since Ivan Prusina was, in fact suspended... and that the technicality by which his suspension was declared null was due to a procedural error by the Congregation for Religious Life, not by any error of the Bishop.

3) What of the unauthorised "devotional material" published by Frs. Vega and Prusina, without the permission of (and against the express orders of) the Bishop? See my earlier comment; this was flatly disobedient, yes?

paladin said...

Whoops... I left off part of an entire sentence!

but since there is no way to corroborate his story... and since Ivan Prusina was, in fact suspended... and that the technicality by which his suspension was declared null was due to a procedural error by the Congregation for Religious Life, not by any error of the Bishop, [his comments really don't add any light to the situation at all.]

ministryvalues.com said...

I think what is important for the skeptics (i am not necessarily putting you there) to spend more time on his what is happening NOW. It is all "gotcha" and tedious fixations on certain events.
It is important to remember the seers were uncomplicated teenagers/ children. They say repeatedly that they are no different then the rest of us.. they are not saints and they are not infallible. Ministryvalues came along and started speacking up when after some research I realized that the skeptics had no evidence of fraud - they could not explain anything and all I ever heard was that 14 year olds 25 years ago said somethings that seemed inconsistent. Skeptics - other than talking about disobedience - have never offered a single shred of information that would point to a hoax - yet they call it a hoax none the less. This is why I get upset - the baseless charges. I have reached out to the skeptics like no other as I say in my article. I wanted to know what they know. On the other hand not a single skeptics has ever attempted to try and understand position. "Devotee's" are completely open to listening to skeptics - it is the skeptics that are curiously mute and closed minded.

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