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 Post subject: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 3:03 pm 
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When we pray the Creed we start by saying “I believe”, and then make a statement of what we believe exactly, according to Church teaching.

I hear so many say “ I believe in Medjugorje”, but what exactly does this belief encompass?

Does their belief include the apparitions, some or all… the messages… the claims of rosaries turning ‘gold’… that the spinnng sun phenomenon and water seeping from the Risen Christ are in fact miracles… that the so-called ‘secrets’ will come to pass… that all the claims made by pilgrims regarding supernatural experiences are just that – supernatural?

And when any of us get asked, “Do you believe in Medjugorje?” are all Medjugorje creeds the same or do they differ. Is one to able to believe in some aspects of Medjugorje and not others, or does that make the person a ‘skeptic’ or even a ‘non-beleiver’ in the eyes of some Medjugorje ‘believers’.

Is Medjugorje all or nothing, or are we allowed to take on board some aspects and not others, according to our own experience and faith?

Is a Medjugorje ‘believer’ allowed to question or have doubts about any of the multifarious claims without being considered a skeptic?

A man went to Medjugorje one time. He wasn’t a Catholic and was challenged by another pilgrim who questioned his faith because of this. The man replied: “I believe in God, but by your judgement he doesn’t match up to your God.

I once read somewhere that one of the Medjugorje visionaries said that Gospa’s favourite prayer is the Creed. Whether it’s the Apostle’s Creed, the Nicene Creed or the Creed espoused by those who say “I believe in Medjugorje”, I’m not sure.

The Apostle’s Creed and the Nicence Creed is the truth as the Church teaches. Unfortunately, the “I believe in Medjugorje…” creed is yet to be clearly determined, so when I say I believe in Medjugorje it may not be the same as expressed by others because by their judgment it doesn’t match up to their belief. That applies vice versa as well.

I recently came across this teaching by Fr Jozo Zovko;
Quote:
In Medjugorje the miracle is not so much in Our Lady’s apparitions, nor in the words she speaks to us, but in the pilgrim’s reply, who accepts to change his heart and life. That is the great miracle!
 
Take St Francis: the miracle was not that Jesus spoke to him, but in the fact that he gave up everything to become poor in everything.
 
In the Gospel we read of the rich young man who was called by Jesus. The miracle wasn’t that he saw Christ and heard his call; it would have been in his response, had he responded. But he preferred his riches to Jesus. That is a miracle which did not occur.
 
In Medjugorje a pilgrim can decide to see a miracle or not. It is not a miracle for God to talk; it is normal. In Medjugorje it is the pilgrim who decides if a miracle will occur or not. All he has to do is to open his heart to respond to the call.

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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 8:36 pm 
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I am naturally quite rigid in my thinking (born that way!), so I do tend to think that the authenticity of the apparitions is the be all and end all.
If the apparitions prove to be a hoax, then you could (in theory) attribute conversions to a kind of placebo effect. Ie: Mirjana convinces me so much that I can't help but open my heart to God in a more devoted way.
If you compare Christianity with other faiths, one of the big differences has always been on going apparitions and miracles. Whether we like it or not, we have to admit that this has helped Christianity survive down the centuries. How many Christians would the world now have if nothing supernatural had happened since the resurrection? It would be like Islam - a religion that only has its scriptures to rely on and nothing else.
Don't get me wrong, the New Testament would still be a compelling book (and much more reasonable than the Quran), but the great stories of Saints, apparitions and miracles bolster it in terms of believability.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 9:42 pm 
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Quote:
I do tend to think that the authenticity of the apparitions is the be all and end all.

So your Medjugorje Creed is all and everything appertaining to Medjugorje is the truth?

By the way, I’m not seeking to discourage anyone’s belief in Medjugorje, whatever it amounts to, just trying to work my way through what people actually mean when they say they believe in Medjugorje, what their Medjugorje Creed actually is.

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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 10:11 pm 
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When i say 'i believe in Medjugorje', (even though I've never been), i mean that i truly believe the place is a special place of retreat where Our Lady calls people
especially, for different reasons & different purposes.
For some to strengthen their faith, for others to get faith in the first place & healing,
others instructions and teachings on how to better follow Jesus, or even just basic encouragement to engage more in the sacraments and in the church.
I think she gathers certain people to experience a special 'nearness', that may not be available in their every day life or locations or with the people around them.
Let's face it, good examples may be thin on the ground in certain places as opposed to others.

I see the visionaries messages serving more as for evangelistic purposes, even without any promise of 'secrets' coming true.
They have this unique experience that they must share in the way a baton of faith must be passed.
In the same way the church is built up as described in the gospels recently, people are gifted in different ways and for
different reasons.

I prefer not to dwell on 'secrets' coming true, my faith is not dependent on them. I don't think of the secrets as the primary function of Medjugorje. Its in the background but that's where it seems to stay. Its down-played.
My 'belief' in Medjugorje will not be shattered if they don't come true by 'x' number of years.

I see it as a bigger reflection of the pilgrim journey on earth, we go there to be led to the rock that is higher than ourselves.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2018 11:23 pm 
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I believe:

(1) Our Lady is present. There is a feeling of a presence and a sense of peace. I have noticed most times I went. On my third pilgrimage, I didn't feel it and wondered why. I went to a talk by Fr Slavko and without me asking he said that some pilgrims have returned to Medjugorje and not felt the peace. He explained that God did not want to raise spoiled children (Paraphrased). I notice a similar presence in church but not while the Blessed Sacrament is removed at Easter

(2) I believe she appears to the visionaries. One time before my first Pilgrimage, Ivan came to Australia and during his apparition, I smelt the perfume of roses. I bought a book that evening and in it they mentioned that people do sometimes smell the perfume of roses. I didn't know that before. I've been in Ivan's chapel and not smelt it then.

(3) I believe in the healings. The healing of Darren, the irish lad who you'd often see near the choir at St James in a wheel chair now walks after being given a rosary blessed at one of Mirjana's apparitions.

(4) I believe the risen christ issue is very likely true. I did extensive video footage but have lost some key bits. One of these days I'll try and put together what I've got and provide some explanation of the other things I've noticed.

Cheers
Leo.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2018 7:29 am 
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bluecross wrote:
Quote:
I do tend to think that the authenticity of the apparitions is the be all and end all.

So your Medjugorje Creed is all and everything appertaining to Medjugorje is the truth?

By the way, I’m not seeking to discourage anyone’s belief in Medjugorje, whatever it amounts to, just trying to work my way through what people actually mean when they say they believe in Medjugorje, what their Medjugorje Creed actually is.


Yes, my belief is based on the visionaries being authentic. It's a belief which makes me nervous as it involves putting my faith in 6 fallible human beings.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2018 2:49 pm 
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stunnedbyit wrote:
Yes, my belief is based on the visionaries being authentic.

Explain what OTHER authentication of belief might be possible if NOT on human visionaries.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2018 7:07 pm 
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Prodigals wrote:
stunnedbyit wrote:
Yes, my belief is based on the visionaries being authentic.

Explain what OTHER authentication of belief might be possible if NOT on human visionaries.


You mean specifically Medjugorje rather than Catholicism itself?
I see your point. Medjugorje itself would not even be known without the 6 visionaries. If it was proven that the visionaries were behind an elaborate hoax, then I would not be able to pick out anything else about Medjugorje which could be used to strengthen the case for Catholicism. All the good fruit would be attributed to the good will of trusting people.


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2018 9:16 pm 
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stunnedbyit wrote:
You mean specifically Medjugorje rather than Catholicism itself?

I took it you were referring to your belief in Medjugorje. If you were referring to your belief in Catholicism being based on visionaries from an apparition, then your spiritual house is built on quicksand.

If someone says they "believe" in an apparition event the only support they can have for their belief is ultimately the visionary's story. None of the other things surrounding an event (miracle of the sun, miraculous stories of healing, testimony from saintly priests, weeping knees, etc) mean anything unless you also have analyzed - and believed - the visionaries. You can't on one hand say that the seers are frauds, but yet accept that wonderful special graces are flowing in that place. You can't say that good fruit is coming from a fraudulent tree.

None of the many bystanders at Lourdes could see what Bernadette saw in the grotto. Their eventual belief of disbelief was based solely on their personal analysis of what the visionary said and what the visionary did.

Would a miracle of the sun, or rosaries turning gold make you believe if in your heart you were sure the supposed visionaries were making it up?


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 Post subject: Re: The Medjugorje Creed
PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2018 5:34 am 
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Prodigals wrote:

Would a miracle of the sun, or rosaries turning gold make you believe if in your heart you were sure the supposed visionaries were making it up?


I witnessed the miracle of the sun in 2006, but discussion on this forum (years back) made me doubt whether it was a miracle or not. I think it was said that it could be explained scientifically.
Now, a Rosary turning gold would blow my mind! Such an event would certainly give me cause to re examine my doubts towards the visionaries (if I had doubts).


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