In a letter sent last month to the general secretary of the USCCB, the apostolic nuncio to the United States reminded US bishops that the alleged Marian apparitions at Medjugorje have not been approved by the Vatican and that clergy and the faithful are not to participate in events supporting or celebrating the “seers” and their messages as genuine.
The letter from Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano to Msgr. Ronny Jenkins, written at the behest of Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Müller, prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, was sent on to all US bishops, Catholic News Agency has confirmed. The letter was prompted by two scheduled appearances by Medjugorje “seer” Ivan Dragicevic, one in Danvers, Massachusetts and one in Greenville, Rhode Island; the events were canceled days after Vigano’s letter was sent.
The full letter is included below, image via Rorate Caeli.
The alleged apparitions at Medjugorje began in 1981, when six children claimed to have been visited by the Virgin Mary. They claim the visions have continued on a daily basis since that time; the small town in Bosnia-Herzegovina has become a popular pilgrimage site, with many reports of supernatural events and miraculous healings.
In 1991 the Yugoslav Episcopal Conference released an assessment of the alleged apparitions, stating, “On the basis of the research that has been done, it is not possible to state that there were apparitions or supernatural revelations.” The Vatican is currently investigating the authenticity of the Medjugorje seers’ claims.