by Terence Sheehy EVIDENCE that the apparitions at Medjugorje in Yugoslavia are causing some embarrassment to the Communist regime reached the Catholic Herald recently in the form of a statement from the local bishop which emphasised that the apparitions had not been authenticated and urging caution.
On page five of this issue we print in full the statement from Bishop Pavao Zanic of Mostar and the commission set up to examine the claim of the six children who say that Our Lady has been appearing to them over the past three years.
As in all such matters the Church has not yet announced that the apparitions are worthy of faith, and the events at Medjugorje remain under investigation.
Many hundreds of our readers have visited the church of St James in Medjugorje, just twelve miles from Mostar, and met with the children, the parishioners, and the Franciscans who run the parish.
At no time have we ever reported on the apparitions with any regard to "presumed miraculous healings". What we have reported from eye witness accounts is the apparent spiritual transformation of the parish of St. James in Medjugorje in response to the message of Our Lady which is said to be, basically, a call to peace through conversion, conversion through faith, prayer and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
It must be remembered that Yugoslavia, after Yalta, was set up as a communist state under Marshal Tito, and the authorities, are embarrassed, to say the least, by the manifestations of fundamental Christian faith, particularly by young people in their officially atheistic state.
It is significant that the Commission has been advised by the Holy See to hasten slowly.
See page 5