Our Lady of Medjugorje
The following is an excellent introduction to Our Lady of Medjugorje from the pre-eminent Medjugorje website, www.medjugorje.org. For an overview of the Church’s position on Medjugorje, go here: https://medjugorje.org/church.htm
(Used with permission)
Since 1981, in a small village in Bosnia-Hercegovina named Medjugorje, the Blessed Virgin Mary has been appearing and giving messages to the world. She tells us that God has sent Her to our world, and these years She is spending with us are a time of Grace granted by God. In Her own words She tells us, "I have come to tell the world that God exists. He is the fullness of life, and to enjoy this fullness and peace, you must return to God".
Our Lady's mission is one of peace. She has come to earth to reeducate us and to help us convert and recenter our lives back to God. Our Lady's role has always been one of guiding people to Her Son, Jesus. What an amazing opportunity we have before us! Our Lady's call to conversion is urgent, and we should respond with all our hearts.
Our Lady continues to give messages to six people from the village of Medjugorje: Ivan, Jakov, Marija, Mirjana, Vicka, and Ivanka. These six people (referred to as "visionaries") have received apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary since June 24, 1981. In addition to Her public messages, Our Lady is to give each of the six visionaries a total of ten "secrets" of happenings that will occur on earth in the near future. Some of the secrets pertain to the whole world while others concern the visionaries themselves or the local village. Only one of the secrets has so far been revealed by the visionaries. In the third secret Our Lady has promised to leave a supernatural, indestructible, and visible sign on the mountain where she first appeared. Our Lady said: "This sign will be given for the atheists. You faithful already have signs and you have become the sign for the atheists. You faithful must not wait for the sign before you convert; convert soon. This time is a time of grace for you. You can never thank God enough for His grace. The time is for deepening your faith, and for your conversion. When the sign comes, it will be too late for many."
When each of the six visionaries has received all ten "secrets", Our Lady will stop appearing to them on a daily basis. Currently, Marija, Vicka, and Ivan have received nine secrets, and Our Lady still appears to them every day, wherever they are, at 6:40pm. Mirjana, Jakov, and Ivanka have received all ten secrets, and Our Lady appears to them once per year for the rest of their lives. For Ivanka who received her 10th secret on May 7, 1985 it is on the anniversary of the apparitions, June 25 each year. For Jakov who received his 10th secret on September 12, 1998, it is on Christmas day each year. And for Mirjana who received her 10th secret on Christmas 1982, it is on her birthday, March 18 each year. Our Lady has also appeared to Mirjana on the 2nd of each month from August 2, 1987 until March 2, 2020, for the purpose of praying for all unbelievers. Mirjana tells us that it is very important that all of us pray for the unbelievers in the world, who are described as those who have not yet experienced God's love. No one knows when Our Lady will give the tenth secret to Marija, Ivan, and Vicka.
Once Our Lady has stopped appearing there will be three warnings given to the world. These warnings will be in the form of events on earth. They will occur within Mirjana's lifetime, and Mirjana will be a witness to them. Ten days before each of the warnings, she will advise the priest she chose for this task (Father Petar Ljubicic), who will then pray and fast with Mirjana for seven days. Then, three days before each warning is to take place, Fr. Petar will announce to the world what, where, and when the warning will take place. Fr. Petar has no choice, and must reveal each warning. After the first warning, the other two will follow in a rather short period of time. That interval will be a period of great grace and conversion. After the permanent, visible, supernatural, and indestructible sign appears on the mountain where Our Lady first appeared in Medjugorje, there will be little time for conversion. For that reason, the Blessed Virgin invites us to urgent conversion and reconciliation. The permanent sign will lead to many healings and conversions before the secrets become reality. According to Mirjana, the events predicted by the Blessed Virgin are near. By virtue of this experience, Mirjana proclaims to the world: 'Hurry, be converted; open your hearts to God.'
The ninth and tenth secrets are serious. They concern chastisement for the sins of the world. Punishment is inevitable, for we cannot expect the whole world to be converted. The punishment can be diminished by prayer and penance, but it cannot be eliminated. Mirjana says that one of the evils that threatened the world, the one contained in the seventh secret, has been averted, thanks to prayer and fasting. That is why the Blessed Virgin continues to encourage prayer and fasting: "You have forgotten that with prayer and fasting you can ward off wars, suspend natural laws."
In addition to this basic message, Mirjana related an apparition she had in 1982, which sheds some light on certain aspects of Church history. She spoke of an apparition in which satan appeared to her, and asked Mirjana to renounce Our Lady and to follow him. By doing so she could be happy in love and in life. He added that following Our Lady would only lead to suffering. Mirjana rejected him, and immediately Our Lady appeared and Satan disappeared. Then Our Lady gave Mirjana the following message:
"Excuse me for this, but you must realize that Satan exists. One day he appeared before the throne of God and asked permission to submit the Church to a period of trial. God gave him permission to try the Church for one century. This century is under the power of the devil; but when the secrets confided to you come to pass, his power will be destroyed. Even now he is beginning to lose his power and has become aggressive. He is destroying marriages, creating divisions among priests and is responsible for obsessions and murder. You must protect yourselves against these things through fasting and prayer, especially community prayer. Carry blessed objects with you. Put them in your house, and restore the use of holy water."
According to certain Catholic experts who have studied these apparitions, this message of Mirjana may shed light on the vision Pope Leo XIII had. According to them, it was after having had an apocalyptic vision of the future of the Church that Leo XIII introduced the prayer to Saint Michael, which priests used to recite after Mass up to the time of the Second Vatican Council. These experts say that the century of trials foreseen by Leo XIII is about to end.
Since the apparitions began in 1981, approximately 40 million people of all faiths, from all over the world, have visited Medjugorje and have left spiritually strengthened and renewed. Many bring back stories of miracles in the form of healings (of mind, body and spirit), supernatural visual signs, and deep conversions back to God. You owe it to yourself and your loved ones, to investigate with an open mind and heart the messages which are given to us by Our Lady of Medjugorje. I invite you to read these messages and decide for yourself how they will affect your life and that of your family.
Our Lady's messages are meant to be assembled like a mosaic. To understand the full meaning and depth of these messages, we need to study all of the messages She has given us over these last 33+ years. "By means of the messages, I wish to make a very beautiful mosaic in your hearts." (November 25, 1989). Our Lady has asked that we continually read, study, and meditate on the messages which She has given us. She said: "Little children, read every day the messages I gave you and transform them into life. I love you and this is why I call you to the way of salvation with God." (December 25, 1989).
The technique of teaching which Our Lady uses, reeducates us to be Christians. She accomplishes this by walking with us, and guiding us step by step, message by message. Today, many people think it is not important to be a Christian. Others want to live a superficial form of Christianity which is easier or more convenient than living a true Christian life. Our Lady wants to show us through Her messages the real face of Christianity. This is a long process because we as a society have strayed far from the truth and God and are slow to learn. This is true both in the Church and outside the Church. We have to accept being totally reeducated, little by little, by the Mother of God. The problem with mankind is not so much that people have bad intentions; there are plenty of good hearted people. The problem is that we sometimes don't see the truth; we are in darkness, and many of us are just blind. We do not realize that we have put ourselves into the hands of satan because we do not know how to tell the difference between right and wrong. Many of us become an image of satan without even knowing it.
I don't think that anyone could argue, regardless of religious orientation, that today's world is in a state of crisis. All one has to do is read the newspaper or watch television to be see how eroded the morals of our world have become. It is shocking to see and hear the examples of terrorism, inhumanity, cruelty, violence, abuse, drugs, war, crime, etc., etc. Much of the world has strayed far from a life centered around God and family. The answers which we need to redirect our life can be found by reading and living Our Lady's messages and Scripture.
"You are ready to commit sin, and to put yourselves in the hands of satan without reflecting." (May 25, 1987)
"Do not allow satan to gain control of your hearts, so you would be an image of satan and not of me." (January 30, 1986)
"Children, darkness reigns over the whole world. People are attracted by many things and they forget about the more important."
"Light won't reign in the world until people accept Jesus, until they live His words, which is the Word of the Gospel."
"Dear children, this is the reason for my presence among you for such a long time: to lead you on the path of Jesus. I want to save you and, through you, to save the whole world. Many people now live without faith; some don't even want to hear about Jesus, but they still want peace and satisfaction! Children, here is the reason why I need your prayer: prayer is the only way to save the human race." (July 30, 1987)
We must realize that Satan is real. He uses us for his own end and purposes. His main purpose is destruction. Destruction of love, peace, faith, family, and life. Just as God gave David 5 stones with which to defeat Goliath, Our Lady is also giving us 5 Stones or Weapons we can use to defeat satan.
Daily Prayer (Of the Rosary)
Fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays
Daily Reading of the Bible
Pope St. John Paul II on Medjugorje
While these statements are not verified by the Pope's seal and signature, they are brought to us by persons in whom we may trust.
The Archbishop Kwangju said to the Pope: "In Korea, in the town of Nadju, Our Lady cries..." The Pope answered, "THERE ARE BISHOPS, LIKE IN YUGOSLAVIA FOR EXAMPLE WHO ARE AGAINST THIS...., BUT IT'S IMPORTANT TO LOOK AT THE GREAT NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO ARE ANSWERING HER INVITATIONS, THE AMOUNT OF CONVERSIONS... ALL THIS IS UNDERLINED IN THE GOSPEL, ALL THESE FACTS HAVE TO BE SERIOUSLY INVESTIGATED."(L`Homme Nouveau, 3. February 1991.)
Mons. Maurillo Kreiger, former bishop of Florianopolis (Brazil), visited Medjugorje four times. His first visit was in 1986. He writes as follows: "In 1988, I was with eight other bishops and thirty-three priests on spiritual retreat in the Vatican. The Holy Father knew that many of us were going to Medjugorje afterwards. After a private mass with the Pope, before leaving Rome, he said, without having been asked anything, "PRAY FOR ME IN MEDJUGORJE". On another occasion, I told the Pope "I am going to Medjugorje for the fourth time". He concentrated his thoughts and said, "MEDJUGORJE, MEDJUGORJE, IT'S THE SPIRITUAL HEART OF THE WORLD". On the same day I spoke with other Brazilian bishops and the Pope at lunch time, and I asked him: "Your holiness, can I tell the visionaries that you send your blessing?" He answered: "YES YES," and embraced me.
Italian priest Fr. Gianni Sgreva - "The young people, who came together in the prayer groups that I followed, in the course of time felt the need for founding a community that would be based on the Medjugorje messages and would indeed thereby be a direct fruit of Medjugorje. I, on the contrary, avoided the very thought of some new community because I already had my way, my vocation, and my work as a professor. Meanwhile, the desire and insistence of the young people for the realization of their needs and goals, grew stronger every day. I made it all known to my spiritual director and my own provincial. They asked me to follow the development of events and I did that. The following question bothered me: how to establish and lead a community that is connected with a reality such as is Medjugorje where yet 'unapproved apparitions' are taking place? Before founding the community I spoke with Cardinal Ratzinger. He listened to everything attentively and instructed me what to do. For Medjugorje he told me, "Don't you worry about the tree, you worry about the fruits, the vocations, and Medjugorje is our concern." I spoke also with the Holy Father. I talked to him about the community and the vocations connected with the experience of Medjugorje. The Holy Father listened to me, drew close to me and right in my ear said to me, reminding me not to forget: "DON'T YOU BE CONCERNED ABOUT MEDJUGORJE, BECAUSE I'M THINKING ABOUT MEDJUGORJE AND I PRAY FOR ITS SUCCESS EVERY DAY. YOU BE CONCERNED WITH THE VOCATIONS AND PRAY FOR ME EVERY DAY"
August 1, 1989 address by the Pope to a group of Italian physicians dedicated to defending unborn life and to making scientific and medical studies on the apparition, as reported by Bishop Paul Hnilica, SJ, Auxiliary Bishop of Rome: "TODAY'S WORLD HAS LOST ITS SENSE OF THE SUPERNATURAL, BUT MANY ARE SEARCHING FOR IT - AND FIND IT IN MEDJUGORJE, THROUGH PRAYER, PENANCE AND FASTING."
June 1986 response to a group of twelve Italian bishops seeking pastoral advice on people making pilgrimages to Medjugorje. "LET THE PEOPLE GO TO MEDJUGORJE IF THEY CONVERT, PRAY, CONFESS, DO PENANCE AND FAST."
In the Korean Catholic weekly, Catholic News, from the 11th of November 1990 an interview with Mons. Angelo Kim Nam Soo President of BK Korea was published. He had been at a luncheon audience with Pope John Paul II together with six other bishops on Oct 15th that year. Mons. Kim recalls that, "words of praise were addressed to the Pope regarding the change brought about in Eastern Europe. The Pope replied with a smile that he hadn't done much, rather, it was a work of providence from above, and it was carried out in accordance with the promise of Our Lady of Fatima. The Pope continued that the account of Our Lady of Fatima is private revelation and said that it differed fundamentally from public revelation. He also used the example of Our Lady's apparitions in Medjugorje and commented on how wonderful it is that despite some Bishops opposition, many people visit there, are converted, and favored with God's grace. He then smiled"
The Pope said to Fr. Jozo Zovko on the 20th of July 1992: "BUSY YOURSELF WITH MEDJUGORJE, LOOK AFTER MEDJUGORJE, DON'T TIRE. PERSEVERE, BE STRONG, I AM WITH YOU. WATCH OVER, FOLLOW MEDJUGPORJE."
In a private conversation with the visionary Mirjana Soldo the Pope said: "IF I WERE NOT POPE I WOULD ALREADY BE IN MEDJUGORJE CONFESSING."(1987)
On March 22nd, 1995, Vicka accompanied 350 wounded and crippled Croatian soldiers to Rome where the Pope gave them a private audience. She was the translator (Italian-Croatian) and the Pope immediately recognized her: "ARE YOU NOT VICKA FROM MEDJUGORJE?" he asked her. Vicka then offered him a rosary saying: "I guess you have many rosaries already, but this one is special as it was blessed by the Gospa during an apparition." The Pope said to her: "PRAY TO THE MADONNA FOR ME, I PRAY FOR YOU." He prayed over her a long time & blessed her.
The Archbishop of Paraguay, Mons. Felipe Santiago Bentez, in November of 1994 asked of the Holy Father, the Pope if he was right to give approval to the faithful gathering in the spirit of Medjugorje, especially with the priests of Medjugorje. The Holy Father answered: "APPROVE ALL THAT IS RELATED TO MEDJUGORJE".
Pope John Paul II, in response to a question asked by the Archbishop of Asuncion, La Paz, Bolivia. - Feb. 1995 "AUTHORIZE EVERYTHING THAT REGARDS MEDJUGORJE"
On April 6th, l995 a Croatian Delegation made an official visit to the Holy Father. The Delegation included the President Tudjman, the Vice President Radic and Cardinal Kuharic from Zagreb. The Pope read his official statement and afterwards, as he often does, he spontaneously added a few words of his own. "I WANT TO GO TO SPLIT, TO
MARIA BISTRICA AND TO MEDJUGORJE!"
On April 2, 1986, reported by Fr. Ivan Dugandzic, OFM, during a meeting with the Holy Father. The Holy Father told him that he follows the events continuously. "YOU CAN TELL EVERYONE THAT EACH DAY I PRAY FOR A HAPPY CONCLUSION TO THESE EVENTS."
From Bishop Michael D. Pfeifer, OMI, Bishop of San Angelo, Texas, National Catholic Register, April 15,1990: "During my Ad Lumina visit to Rome with the Bishops of Texas in April 1988, I asked our Holy Father his opinion about Medjugorje during the private conversation I had with him. He spoke very favorably about the happenings there, pointing out the good which had been done for people. During the lunch which the Texan bishops later had with the Holy Father, Medjugorje came up for further discussion. Again His Holiness spoke of how it has changed the lives of people who visit it, and said that so far the messages are not contrary to the gospel."
"MEDJUGORJE IS A GREAT CENTRE OF SPIRITUALITY!" - The Holy Father's comment during a February 1990 conversation, as reported by Bishop Murilo Krieger, Auxiliary Bishop of Florianopolis, Brazil, made prior to His Grace's fourth Medjugorje pilgrimage. The Holy Father assented to Bishop Krieger's request and gave his papal blessing to the visionaries (National Catholic Register, April 29,1990)
"IF I WASN'T THE POPE, I'D BE IN MEDJUGORJE ALREADY!" - Reported April 21, 1989 by Bishop Paul Hnilica, SJ, Auxiliary Bishop of Rome, after having been admonished by the Holy Father for not stopping in Medjugorje on his return trip to Rome from a meeting in Moscow on behalf of the Pope.
The Holy Father credits our Blessed Mother for interceding to save his life after being shot.