THE RESPONSE OF THE CHURCH TO MARIAN APPARITIONS
Note 1. Guadalupe, Miraculous Medal, Lourdes, Beauraing and Banneux - [References (1) &(10)]
In the case of the Our Lady of Guadalupe Apparitions, we may surmise that She was intervening to achieve the massive conversion and consolation that was not being accomplished by those who were charged with Evangelizing the Americas. Aware of the emotional and cultural background of the natives and their childlike trust in the supernatural, God knew that an apparition of His Mother would be believed immediately and, without a set of instructions, massive conversions would take place. It happened!
In the Apparition called of the Miraculous Medal, the Blessed Virgin introduced the concept that we could appeal to Her through the virtue of Her Immaculate Conception. Around the border of the medal, that She requested be struck, reads: "Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee."
On December 8, 1854, Pope Pius IX, obedient to Divine inspiration, proclaimed the Dogma of Her Immaculate Conception.
At Lourdes, on March 25, 1858, our Lady announced to Bernardette that She was "The Immaculate Conception" . This was the confirmation from Heaven of the earlier message of the Miraculous Medal ("...conceived without sin...").
Thus through the apparitions of the Miraculous Medal, the proclamation of the Dogma of Her Immaculate Conception and Her confirmation of it in 1858 through Her Lourdes podium, Heaven set the stage for the promotion of the devotion to Her Immaculate Heart.
In subsequent Apparitions of Our Lord and of Our Lady, Her Immaculate Heart has been compared to Noah's Ark. That is, the only safe refuge during the great tribulations and chastisements that would follow from the mid 19th Century to the end of These Times, was to be Her Immaculate Heart.
In Beauraing and Banneux there was nothing She could add to what was said in Fátima. The Church was not doing what She had asked and the world was about to plunge into WW II. This writer surmises that She was hoping that by Her mere public reappearance people would remember the events at Fátima and, at last, take the action requested.
Note 2. La Salette - [Reference (2)]
The prophecies of La Salette are extensive and detailed and very important to our times
With the illumination from the Holy Spirit one may discern that in La Salette She spoke of events up to, and including, the end of These Times. More than half of the prophecies deal with apocalyptic events that are already at our doors. As expected, they agree very well with the urgent messages from Heaven being delivered since the early sixties as well as with the Holy Scriptures.
For the purposes of this work, this writer has selected some of the very key ones that clearly corroborate their prophetic value.
Prophecies and Warnings
"The priests, ministers of my son,...,by their wicked lives, by their irreverence and impiety in the celebration of the holy mysteries,.... have become cesspools of impurity. Yes, the priests are asking for vengeance, and vengeance is hanging over their heads".
"The chiefs, the leaders of the people of God have neglected prayer and penance, and the devil has bedimmed their intelligence."
"May he (Pope Pius IX) be on his guard against Napoleon; he is two-faced, and when he wishes to make himself Pope as well as Emperor, soon God will draw back from him."
"In the year 1864, Lucifer together with a large number of demons will be unloosed from hell; they will put an end to faith little by little, even in those dedicated to God. They will blind them in such way, that, unless they are blessed with a special grace, these people will take on the spirit of these angels from hell; several religious institutions will lose all faith and will lose many souls."
"Evil books will be abundant on earth, and the spirits of darkness will spread everywhere a universal slackening in all that concerns the service of God. They will have great power over Nature; there will be churches built to serve these evil spirits..."
"All the civil governments will have one and the same plan, which will be to abolish and do away with every religious principle, to make way for materialism, atheism, spiritualism and vice of all kinds".
"France, Italy, Spain and England will be at war.... Frenchman will fight Frenchman, Italian will fight Italian. A general war will follow which will be appalling."
Please note: When the secret of La Salette is read in its entirety few factors must be considered:
With a quick look at the events in Europe from the second half of that century (19th) plus the events in Europe and the Americas in the first half of the 20th century, it is easy to see how accurate She predicted all the horrors that were going to befall the world.
From the decaying clergy that resulted in brutal church persecution in many European countries, to the birth of Marxism (the seed of the scourge of humanity, atheistic materialism), to World War II, to the subtle ways governments have separated the church and the state, which has yielded atheistic societies that still call themselves Christians, to the onslaught of pornography in every aspect of social communications which is now called 'adult entertainment', to the atrocities of the French Communes of the 19th century, to Arian supremacy with its father, Hitler, all have been fulfilled.
This writer does not believe that there is another Apparition of Our Lady that has prophesied so much and that already has occurred.
What is simply overwhelming is that She talks about these Ends Times, NOW, with great detail, and in perfect harmony with Scriptural forecasts of the events of the End Times, which in turn are in harmony with the apocalyptic revelations through Fátima, Garabandal, San Nicolas and Medjugorje.
This writer strongly encourages all to study and meditate on what was relayed to us so many years ago. This may be critical for the understanding of today's world. One may even see in Her prophecy "...the Apostles of the Last Days... who have lived in scorn.. in chastity and in union with God.. to...come out and fill the world with light." The many fine priests, religious and members of the laity who today are serenely faithful to the Gospel and the Faith they profess regardless of the mockery by the Christian right and left.
Note 3. Fátima - [References (3A), (3B) & (4)]
Complaints, Requests and Prophecies
"You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved [you will have peace (a)]*. The war (referring to WW I) is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out (referring to WW II) during the Pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illuminated by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that He is [going (b)] to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, [hunger (c)], and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.
"To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and [you will have peace (d)]; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, [promoting (e)] wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated[; (f)] [in (g)] the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world. In Portugal the dogma of the Faith will be preserved, etc." (here commences the undisclosed portion of the original secret).
* Note Explaining "[ ]"
We must also remember that S. Lucia wrote what the Virgin Mary said. Therefore, it must be read and intellectually processed as if being heard.
A photocopy of the sections in question in Sister Lucia's own handwriting may be accessed through Appendix No.5.
Further, the above needs to be assimilated in conjunction with what Our Lady said to Sister Lucia in June 13, 1929...
"The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means. There are so many souls whom the Justice of God condemns for sins committed against me, that I have come to ask reparation: sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray." Later, in an intimate communication, Our Lord complained to Sister Lucia, saying:
"They did not wish to heed my request. Like the King of France, they will repent and do it, but it will be too late. Russia will have already spread her errors throughout the world, provoking wars, and persecutions of the Church; the Holy Father will have much to suffer."
Our Response and the Fulfillment of Prophecies
Nothing was done (up to) and on January 24, 1938, Sister Lucia, the only living Fátima visionary, and the world, saw the sky of Northern Europe crimson red from 9 P.M. to 2 A.M.. Lucia knew that that was the sign from God that it was too late. Hitler started his invasions that summer and the war was officially declared on September 1, 1939. It was after this, on September 13, 1939, that the Bishop of Leiria started promoting the request of the acts of reparation on the First Saturdays.
In the same "spirit of delayed urgency", Russia was consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in 1942, 1952, 1964, 1982 and 1984. The last ones (1982 & 1984), after Russia had completely overrun the world with "its errors", the consecration were done in closer conformity with the instructions from Our Lady as related to Sister Lucia in 1929.
As Sister Lucia stated in a rare interview granted to El Sol de Fátima [Ref. (4)] when asked about correctness of the 1982 Consecration, she answered: "Yes. But late." This, of course is in perfect agreement with the, above quoted, intimate communication Our Lord had with Sister Lucia after June 13, 1929
Our Lord seems to have granted the temporary collapse of the Soviet Union as a show of His immense power. However, Russia did spread her errors from 1929 until now. Those errors have brought the world to the verge of a major world conflagration which shall soon commence.
The very architect of the apparent collapse of the Soviet Union and Communism, Mikhail Gorbachev, declared in an interview published in Portugal on December 30, 1992, [Ref. (12)] that: "U.S.S.R. STILL EXISTS!" We all are familiar with the folklore maxim: Where there is smoke, there is a fire. It is then plausible that Communism, better called "atheistic materialism", still exists and awaiting the right opportunity for its comeback.
Note 4 Rosa Mystica [References (5) & (5A)]
"...the religious who, for a long time now, have become indifferent thus betraying their vocation, and, as a result of their offenses, have brought about the punishments and persecutions which are raging against the Church at the present time (1947) - will stop to offend Our Lord". [p. 8 of Reference (5)]
"I am the Mother of Jesus and the Mother of all of you. Our Lord send me to bring a new Marian Devotion to all religious orders and institutes, male and female, and to the priests of this world. I promise to protect those religious orders and institutes who will venerate me in this special way, increase their vocations, and achieve a greater striving for saintliness among the servants of God". [p. 8 of Reference (5)]
"I have placed myself as the mediatrix between my Divine Son and mankind, especially for the souls consecrated to God. Tired of the continued offenses, He already wanted to dispense His Justice." [p. 9 of Reference (5)]
Action and Consequences
Individuals of the Church clergy have done very little to promote the messages, thus, no real change.
Consequences: The entire body of the Church is in total disarray. Many Shepherds have been struck thus the flock has scattered and submerged in errors leading to the eventual open schism within the Church.
Note 5 Garabandal - [Reference (6)]
Complaints and Requests
These are summed up in two critical messages...
October 18, 1961 - Conchita, the principal visionary, relates to us that Our Lady said that we must make many sacrifices, perform much penance, and visit Jesus present in the Eucharist frequently. But first, we must lead good lives. If we do not, a chastisement will befall us. The cup is already filling up, and if we do not change, a very great chastisement will come upon us.
On June 18, 1965 Our Lady sends St. Michael with the following message:
"As my message of October 18 has not been complied with and has not been made known to the world, I am advising you that this is the last one. Before, the cup was filling up. Now it is flowing over. Many Cardinals, many Bishops and many priests are on the road to perdition and are taking many souls with them. Less and less importance is being given to the Eucharist. You should turn the wrath of God away from yourselves by your efforts. If you ask His forgiveness with sincere hearts, He will pardon you. I, your Mother, through the intercession(*) of Saint Michael the Archangel, ask you to amend your lives. You are now receiving the last warnings. I love you very much and do not want your condemnation. Pray to us with sincerity and we will grant your requests. You should make more sacrifices. Think about the passion of Jesus. ".
Note 6 Akita - [Reference (6A)]
Note 7 San Nicolas - [Reference (7)]
The Complaint and Request may be summed up by three of the messages:
October 13, 1983
March 27, 1986
December 30, 1989
Note 8 Medjugorje - [Reference (8) & (9)]
Father Tomislav Vlasic of the St. James Parish submitted a letter to His Holiness, Pope John Paul II on December, 1983. This was done at the urging of one of the visionaries, Marija Pavlovic: "The Madonna says that the Supreme Pontiff and the Bishop must be advised immediately of the urgency and great importance of the message of Medjugorje."
The letter, as published in Reference (8) (pp. 142-144) follows:
1. Five young people (Vicka Ivankovic, Marija Pavlovic, Ivanka Ivankovik, Ivan Dragicevic and Jakov Colo) see an apparition of the Blessed Virgin every day. The experience in which they see Her is a fact that can be checked by direct observation. It has been filmed. During the apparitions, the youngsters do not react to light, they do not hear sounds, they do not react if someone touches them, they feel that they are beyond time and space.
All of the youngsters basically agree that:
* "We see the Blessed Virgin just as we
see anyone else. We pray with Her, we speak to Her, and we can touch
* "The Blessed Virgin says that the world peace is at a critical stage. She repeatedly calls for reconciliation and conversion."
* "She has promised to leave a visible sign for all humanity at the site of the apparitions of Medjugorje."
* "The period preceding this visible sign is a time of grace for conversion and deepening of the faith."
* "The Blessed Virgin has promised to disclose ten secrets to us." So far, Vicka Ivankovic has received eight. Marija Pavlovic received the ninth one on December 8, 1983. Jakov Colo, Ivan Dragicevic and Ivanka Ivankovik have each received nine. Only Mirjana Dragicevic has received all ten.
2. The Blessed Virgin no longer appears to Mirjana Dragicevic. The last time she saw one of the daily apparitions was Christmas, 1982. Since then, the apparitions have ceased for her, except on her birthday (March 18, 1983). Mirjana knew that this latter would occur.
According to Mirjana, the Madonna confided the tenth and last secret to her during the apparition of December 25, 1982. She also disclosed the dates on which the different secrets will come to pass. The Blessed Virgin has revealed to Mirjana many things about the future, more than to any of the other youngsters so far. For that reason I am reporting below what Mirjana told me during our conversation on November 5, 1983. I am summarizing the substance of her account, without word-for-word quotations.
Before the visible sign is given to humanity, there will be three warnings to the world. The warnings will be in the form of events on earth. Mirjana will be a witness to them. Three days before one of the admonitions, Mirjana will notify a priest of her choice. The witness of Mirjana will be a confirmation of the apparitions and a stimulus for the conversion of the world.
After the admonitions, the visible sign will appear on the site of the apparitions in Medjugorje for all the world to see. The sign will be given as a testimony to the apparitions and in order to call people back to faith.
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 through prayer and fasting you can avert war and suspend the laws of nature".
After the first admonition, the others will follow in a rather short time. Thus, people will have some time for conversion.
That interval will be a period of grace and conversion. After the visible sign appears, those who are still alive will have little time for conversion. For that reason, the Blessed Virgin invites us to urgent conversion and reconciliation.
The invitation to prayer and penance is
meant to avert evil and war, but most of all to save souls.'
[End of summary of Mirjana's account.]
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".
In addition to this basic message, Mirjana related an apparition she had in 1982 which we believe sheds some light on some aspects of Church history. She spoke of an apparition in which satan appeared to he disguised as the Blessed Virgin. Satan asked Mirjana to renounce the Madonna and follow him. That way she could be happy in love and in life. He said that following the Virgin, on the contrary, would only lead to suffering. Mirjana rejected him, and immediately the Virgin appeared and satan disappeared. Then the Blessed Virgin gave her the following message, in substance:
"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 division 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 St. 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.
Holy Father, I do not want to be responsible for the ruin of anyone. I am doing my best. The world is being called to conversion and reconciliation. In writing to you, Holy father, I am only doing my duty. After drafting this letter, I showed it to the youngsters so that they may ask the Blessed Virgin whether its contents are accurate. Ivan Dragicevic relayed the following answer: "Yes, the contents of the letter are the truth. You must notify first of all the Supreme Pontiff and then the Bishop."
This letter is accompanied by fasting and prayers that the Holy Spirit will guide your mind and your heart during this important moment in history.
Yours in the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Fr. Tomislav Vlasic, Medjugorje, December 2, 1983
[End of Letter]
Note: It could be surmised that the "rushed consecration" of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary (with veiled reference to Russia) done by Pope John Paul II, on March 25, 1984, was as a direct result of this urgent message through Medjugorje.
This may be indirectly confirmed by: (1) Studying the contents of a letter Cardinal Cassaroli , the then Secretary of the Vatican State, sent to all Bishops of the world, on behalf of the Holy Father, requesting their participation in the May 13, 1982 Consecration [Ref. (12) p.14]; and (2) The subsequent interview with Sister Lucia [Ref. (12) p.11].
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Bibliography / References
Appendix No.5 Marian Apparitions and The Roman Catholic Church - Obviously the Response to Our Lady Of Fatima Was Not Appropriate
Mysteries Of God
That Allow Us To Better Understand Heavenly Messages