Friday 22nd March 2019

Home » Our Catholic Faith » Currently Reading:

Catholic Replies

October 26, 2018 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Editor’s Note: In a recent column in the Sunday bulletin of the Parish of St. Michael in New York City, Fr. George Rutler expressed his concern about the “mixture of calculation and callowness in the provisional agreement between the Holy See and Communist China, recognizing the primacy of the Pope, but at the price of an unclear arrangement giving the government a role in the appointment of bishops.”
He said that “it was my privilege to know Cardinal Ignatius Kung Pin-Mei of Shanghai, who endured thirty years in prison, and Archbishop Dominic Tang Yee-Ming of Canton, who was imprisoned for twenty-two years, seven of them in solitary confinement. The 87-year-old Cardinal Archbishop of Hong Kong, Joseph Zen, sees a betrayal of those who have suffered so much for Christ. Time will tell if the present diplomacy is wise.”
Fr. Rutler said that “an architect of this agreement, Cardinal Parolin, said, ‘The Church in China does not want to replace the state, but wants to make a positive and serene contribution for the good of all.’ His words are drowned out by the sound of bulldozers knocking down churches while countless Christians languish in ‘re-education camps.’ A fourteenth-century maxim warned: ‘He who sups with the devil should have a long spoon.’ For spoon we might now say chopsticks. When it comes to cutting deals with governments, it is sobering to recall that of the twelve Apostles only one was a diplomat, and he hanged himself.”

Q. I was shocked and sickened, but sadly not surprised, to read your artfully dishonest reply to the question about Medjugorje in your September 20th column. I am sure you would have had to look at the results of the Ruini Report in 2017 to see that the first apparitions to the children were strongly affirmed by the committee (13 in favor, one against, and one suspended). And yet you knowingly misrepresented this. You left out the comments by the Pope about the good fruit (“By their fruit you shall know them”). There have been over 400 documented healings and over 600 documented priestly vocations that have come.
You purposely never mentioned this. . . . Because of the large forum your paper has, you have, through your column, now influenced the uninformed who read your column to avoid Medjugorje. A great offense to our Blessed Mother! You owe her a correction of this information from the Ruini Report. — J.G., Arizona.
A. We have been honestly skeptical about the reported apparitions in Medjugorje ever since we began writing this column in 1991. That skepticism was based at first on a talk we heard Wayne Weible give in the late 1980s.
Mr. Weible, who passed away earlier this year, was a secular journalist whose investigation into Medjugorje led him to write many articles and books asserting that the apparitions were authentic. A Lutheran at the time, who would later convert to Catholicism, Weible quoted our Lady as having promoted religious indifferentism by saying that all religions are equal before God. When asked what he would do if the Catholic Church declared that the apparitions were not authentic, he said that he would ignore the Church and continue to believe in the apparitions.
The second reason for our skepticism was the statement by 19 Yugoslav bishops in 1991 that “one cannot affirm that we are dealing here with supernatural apparitions or revelations.”
The third reason was the number of the apparitions, which was so out of sync with such approved apparitions as those in Fatima and Lourdes.
The fourth reason was the delay in approving or rejecting Medjugorje. Lourdes was approved in four years, and Fatima in 13 years, but it’s been 37 years, and counting, for Medjugorje.
The fifth reason is based on a 2011 book by Donal Anthony Foley entitled Medjugorje Revisited: 30 Years of Visions or Religious Fraud.
We cannot list all of the reasons Mr. Foley gives for disbelieving in Medjugorje in this column; you will have to read his book yourself.
But among his reasons are the worldly character of the visionaries, compared to the innocence, for example, of St. Bernadette at Lourdes or of the three children at Fatima, and later their world travels and affluent lifestyles; their statement on June 30, 1981 that the visions would only last “two or three more days”; the bizarre messages attributed to the Blessed Virgin; the statement of Bishop Ratko Peric, the bishop of Mostar, after an ad limina meeting with Pope Benedict XVI in 2006, that there were “numerous absurd messages, insincerities, falsehoods and disobedience associated with the events and ‘apparitions’ of Medjugorje from the very outset.”
And: the 2008 letter from the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, disciplining Fr. Tomislav Vlasic, spiritual adviser to the visionaries from 1981 to 1984, “for the diffusion of dubious doctrine, manipulation of consciences, suspected mysticism, disobedience toward legitimately issued order,” and sexual immorality.
In July 2009, Pope Benedict laicized Vlasic and imposed conditions on him, “under pain of excommunication,” that prohibited him from releasing declarations on religious matters, especially regarding ‘the phenomenon of Medjugorje’.” This is the same man of whom the Blessed Virgin is alleged to have said in 1982, “Thank Tomislav very much, for he is guiding you very well.”
The Ruini Report refers to a report from a commission established by Pope Benedict in 2010 and headed by Camillo Cardinal Ruini. The commission met for four years, visited Medjugorje, interviewed all the seers and witnesses involved, and, as J.G., said, found credible the first seven alleged appearances, between June 24 and July 3, 1981, but had mixed opinions about the credibility of subsequent reported visions, particularly with regard to repetitive messages and some “secrets” that were to be revealed.
As we said in the September 20th column, Pope Francis called the Ruini Report “very, very good,” although he has made no official pronouncement about its findings, and he has expressed doubts about the Blessed Mother delivering daily messages “at a certain hour.” He did send Archbishop Henryk Hoser of Poland on a “special mission” to Medjugorje to acquire more information about the situation.
In an interview published October 5th in the Franciscan magazine Veritas, Archbishop Hoser compared Medjugorje to Fatima and Lourdes, saying that “these are three Marian shrines which call for repentance and conversion and for the prayer of the rosary. . . . Between these three pilgrimage sites, there is a kind of spiritual solidarity and bondage.”
He said that Medjugorje is “a simple parish. The power of grace that is felt here, the power of God’s words here proclaimed, makes us witnesses to many radical transformations that are happening here. Medjugorje has become the confessional of the world.”
Asked about the reported apparitions, the archbishop said, “The Church’s position is: Let’s wait and see. In general terms, the message of peace that emerges from the Medjugorje phenomenon is always valid. The Queen of Peace — the title of the Mother of God which is present here — existed in distant history as well.”
As for the “fruits” of Medjugorje, there are good ones, such as wonderful stories of repentance, conversions, and vocations. God’s grace can work even at false apparitions, as happened at Necedah and Bayside. But there are other fruits that are not so good, such as causing people to put more stock in apparitions than in the Church.
Wayne Weible noticed a change in the “new entrepreneurs” coming to Medjugorje in later years. He said that “their demeanor was that of rapacious wolves disguised as converted sheep, as they attempted to cash in quickly on the desires of those in search of miracles.”
Weible also said that “many pilgrims who had experienced a life-changing conversion through Medjugorje were now busily following after every claimed visionary and locutionist. They seemed driven by an insatiable thirst to know every possible detail about any supernatural event.”
This is not a healthy attitude, as St. John Paul II said in a statement that appeared in the pages of the September 18, 1996 issue of L’Osservatore Romano:
“Some members of the People of God are not rooted firmly enough in the Faith, so that the sects, with their deceptive proselytism, mislead them to separate themselves from true communion in Christ. Within the Church community, the multiplication of supposed ‘apparitions’ or ‘visions’ is sowing confusion and reveals a certain lack of a solid basis to the Faith and Christian life among her members.”

Share Button

2017 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Twitter Feed

Load More...

Nancy Pelosi: ‘I Myself, as a Catholic, Believe…’

( – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) said at her press briefing on Thursday that she wants to “salute” the Green New Deal and went on to explain that “as a Catholic” she believes—“as do many of our Evangelical friends”—that…Continue Reading

Pope Francis warns against gossip, forgetting one’s own sinfulness

Rome, Italy, Mar 3, 2019 / 01:30 pm (CNA).- In a visit to a Roman parish on Sunday, Pope Francis encouraged Catholics to stop gossiping and ruminating on the shortcomings of other people, and to instead focus on repenting of…Continue Reading

Catholic network Salt + Light stands by CEO Fr. Rosica despite plagiarism

TORONTO, March 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Salt + Light Catholic Media Foundation is standing by Father Thomas Rosica, the network’s CEO, despite revelations of his extensive plagiarism going back almost 30 years. Meanwhile, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops says…Continue Reading

Measure to protect babies who survive abortion fails in Senate 53-44

WASHINGTON (CNS) — The Senate in an evening vote Feb. 25 failed to pass a measure sponsored by Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Nebraska, to require that babies born alive after an abortion be given medical attention and “the same protection of…Continue Reading

Prosecutors drop second trial against Cardinal George Pell

Melbourne, Australia, Feb 25, 2019 / 06:21 pm (CNA).- Prosecutors have abandoned a planned second trial against Australian Cardinal George Pell, who was convicted in December 2018 on five charges of the sexual abuse of minors. Pell is reported to…Continue Reading

Rosica resigns from college board after plagiarism apology; Jesuits withdraw award

Washington D.C., Feb 25, 2019 / 02:47 pm (CNA).- A Canadian priest who apologized last week for plagiarism has resigned from the governing board of a Catholic college affiliated with the University of Toronto. “As a sign of contrition and…Continue Reading

Abuse Survivor: Pope’s Devil Comments ‘Outrageous’

Pope Francis’ latest slam on church critics as cohorts of Satan stunned survivors of priest sex abuse and their advocates, who called the pontiff’s remarks “outrageous” on the eve of his clergy summit on the long-running scandal. “It’s outrageous ……Continue Reading

Pope picks liberal cardinals Cupich, Marx, Tagle for featured talks at Vatican Abuse Summit

ROME, February 18, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago, Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Germany, and Cardinal Antonio Tagle of the Philippines will be featured speakers at the Vatican’s upcoming summit on clerical sex abuse titled, “The Protection of Minors…Continue Reading


RAPID CITY, S.D. ( – A bishop is calling a Catholic apostolate “evil” for being critical of Cdl. Blase Cupich. Bishop Robert Gruss of Rapid City, South Dakota issued a statement to be read from all parish pulpits the weekend of Feb. 9–10 condemning…Continue Reading

The Christian Faith: The only valid and the only God-willed religion

The Truth of the filial adoption in Christ, which is intrinsically supernatural, constitutes the synthesis of the entire Divine Revelation. Being adopted by God as sons is always a gratuitous gift of grace, the most sublime gift of God to…Continue Reading

Roberts joins Supreme Court’s liberal wing in blocking Louisiana abortion law

Chief Justice John Roberts joined the Supreme Court’s liberal wing on Thursday in temporarily blocking a Louisiana law that would have placed restrictions on abortion clinics, in the high court’s first major ruling on abortion since the confirmation of Associate Justice…Continue Reading

Supermodel Takes On Catholic Poland With Sex Education Campaign

Supermodel Anja Rubik could be a symbol of any modern, progressive European country. After joining a campaign to defend women’s rights, she started tackling school sex education and published a book for teenagers that sought to counter the teachings of…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.

  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Discriminating Mercy: Defending Christ And His Church With True Love


  By DON FIER (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Founder of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., graciously took time out of his busy schedule to grant The Wanderer a wide-ranging interview during a recent visit to the Shrine. Included among the topics…Continue Reading

Developing Lives Of Peace After The Heart Of Mary

By RAYMOND LEO CARDINAL BURKE (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the 32nd Annual Church Teaches Forum, “The Message of Fatima: Peace for the World,” Galt House, Louisville, Ky., July 22, 2017. The address is reprinted here with the kind permission of Cardinal Burke. All rights reserved. This is part one of the…Continue Reading


Today . . .

On the question of a heretical pope


The issue of how to handle a heretical pope, in concrete terms, has not yet been treated in a manner which approaches anything like a true general consent in the entire Catholic tradition. So far, neither a pope nor an Ecumenical Council has made relevant doctrinal pronouncements nor have they issued binding canonical norms regarding the eventuality of how to handle a heretical pope during the term of his office. There is no historical case of…Continue Reading

GOP congressman sues Twitter for shadow-bans, discrimination against conservatives

March 20, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – California Republican Rep. Devin Nunes is taking Twitter to court for the social media giant’s alleged discrimination against himself and other prominent conservatives through shadow-banning and other means. Last summer, Nunes was one of several Republican lawmakers and GOP leaders whose Twitter accounts had disappeared from the drop-down menu that normally populates when typing in a name, without comparable figures such as Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez or any…Continue Reading

US bishops’ anti-poverty charity gave $60,000 to pro-gay Marxist group last year

March 15, 2019 (Lepanto Institute) — The 2017–2018 Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) grants list shows that the Northwest Bronx Community & Clergy Coalition (NWBCCC) received $60,000, bringing the total this organization has received to $290,000 since 2005. In 2012, the Reform CCHD Now coalition alerted the US bishops to serious problems with NWBCCC including homosexual activism and the promotion of Marxism. Monsignor Kevin Sullivan of the A

Cardinal DiNardo hospitalized after ‘mild stroke’

Houston, Texas, Mar 16, 2019 / 06:33 pm (CNA).- The president of the U.S. bishops’ conference was hospitalized March 15 after suffering a mild stroke, according to a statement from the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, which has been led by Cardinal Daniel DiNardo since 2006. “It is expected that Cardinal DiNardo will remain hospitalized for a few more days of testing and observation, followed by a transfer to another facili

Democrats Demand Right to Life for Kittens, But Block Bills to Stop Infanticide

What do cats have that newborn babies don’t? Democrats’ support. In one of the sickest ironies no one is talking about, Senate liberals picked this moment — 17 days after they voted to kill America’s perfectly healthy infants — to fight for the humane treatment of kittens. Maybe the DNC’s strategists are out to lunch, or maybe the Left really is this shameless, but I can’t wait to see so


Medical Ethics: “Who’s Next?”

By BARBARA SIMPSON (Editor’s Note: This column first appeared on WorldNetDaily, March 1, 2019.) + + + It’s really getting out of control. The headlines and news reports are filled with life and death. Not war. Not accidents. No, these news stories are about how and when our medical system can, and will, legally kill…Continue Reading

A Dark Night Finally Turns To Day

By TERENCE P. JEFFREY (Editor’s Note: Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor in chief of Creators Syndicate distributes his column.) + + + They could have just kept going, but they didn’t. It was another cold South Dakota day on February 28, 1981, when Lee Litz went out with a friend to test-drive a…Continue Reading

My Reply… An Eastern Orthodox Writer’s Attempt To Justify Divorce And Remarriage

By JAMES LIKOUDIS An Eastern Orthodox correspondent has taken issue with Catholic teaching rejecting adultery as a legitimate ground for divorce and remarriage. His arguments stem from ill-digested readings drawn from both Catholic and Eastern Orthodox sources. The writer, in effect, rejects Catholic doctrine regarding the absolute indissolubility of sacramental marriage. That doctrine, based on…Continue Reading

How Middle America Is To Be Dispossessed

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN In all but one of the last seven presidential elections, Republicans lost the popular vote. George W. Bush and Donald Trump won only by capturing narrow majorities in the Electoral College. Hence the grand strategy of the left: to enlarge and alter the U.S. electorate so as to put victory as…Continue Reading

Love And The Virtue Of Love

By JUDE DOUGHERTY At some time in the last century, perhaps due to the influence of John Dewey and other influential academics in this country, the concept “the values we hold dear” came to replace the notion that we may be accountable to a moral order quite independent of ourselves. Politicians, educators, and journalists commonly…Continue Reading


Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Empty Chalice At Consecration Time… Could Signal A Grave Violation Of Canon Law

By Fr. Edward McNamara, LC (Editor’s Note: Following is a Q-and-A from Fr. Edward McNamara’s regular column published by ZENIT News Agency. The date of this column is March 12, 2019. (ZENIT holds the copyright to this article. All rights reserved.) + + + (Legionary of Christ Fr. Edward McNamara is a professor of liturgy and dean of theology at…Continue Reading

Heaven, The Promised Land

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Third Sunday Of Lent (YR C) Readings: Exodus 3:1-8a, 13-15 1 Cor. 10:1-6, 10-12 Luke 13:1-9 In the readings today we hear about both the justice and the mercy of God. The first reading is all about God’s mercy. The people of Israel had been enslaved in Egypt for 430 years, but in that time they…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . Cardinal Pell: The Pendulum Swings

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The pendulum means nothing on its own and functions only by means of a power external to itself: the law of gravity. The swing of the pendulum is a symbol of the lack of balance, for the forces at work upon it which keep it in constant motion prevent its rest in a central position…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: In his weekly bulletin at the Church of St. Michael in New York City, Fr. George Rutler, after noting that John Henry Cardinal Newman of England will soon be proclaimed a saint and Jozsef Cardinal Mindszenty of Hungary will be declared venerable, said that “Mindszenty was not Newman’s intellectual peer, but his life was the most muscular testimony…Continue Reading

The Church In The Midst Of The Storm . . . “Come To Me All Who Are Weary”

By FR. SHENAN J. BOQUET (Editor’s Note: This article is reprinted with permission of Human Life International, It first appeared at on March 4, 2019. Fr. Boquet is the president of HLI.) + + + “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God still, and trust in me” (John 14:1). Holy Mother Church is in the…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Benedetta Cambiagio Frassinello

By CAROLE BRESLIN Mary and Joseph led a chaste life, as husband and wife for the greater glory of God. The parents of Therese of Lisieux, Marie-Azélie Guérin and Louis Martin, also hoped to live this way, but their spiritual director advised them not to do so. In obedience, they provided the Church with a wonderful example of holiness. Another…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Cuthbert

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Melrose Abbey in Scotland, which is located about 30 miles south-southeast of Edinburgh, attracts more visitors than just about any other attraction in Scotland. Although mostly in ruins now, the abbey boasts a museum and other sites of interest, such as the embalmed heart of Robert the Bruce. Mel Gibson revived interest in him with the…Continue Reading