The end of the “apparitions” announced by the Lady of Medjugorje has raised one of the most, if not the most important objection that has hindered the recognition of their supernatural character.

Today, we’re put to a most disagreeable but necessary task: that of showing that crucial information has been concealed in a major work by an admiral of the medjugorjean armada, historian-exegete-theologian-mariologist-journalist René Laurentin.

Our last editorial reproduced the tape recorded declarations made by the Medjugorje visionaries according to which the Gospa announced, on June 30, 1981, that she would appear to them three more times. We have shown:

• the authenticity of our sources and reliability of the transcripts;

• that most explicitly and without the least ambiguity the visionaries transmit, precisely and by mutual agreement, the announcement of the end of the “apparitions” by the Lady of Medjugorje.

One would expect that such a major announcement would have been communicated with all of its veridical content by the Medjugorje eminent protagonist who knew about it right from the start. But nothing of this ever transpired.

The cover-up remained until the publication of The Hidden Side of Medjugorje, and even later on, since the majority of fervent pilgrims and devotees intolerant to critique is ignoring that announcement.

Hereafter, we will first expose the “omission” of the words which, according to the visionaries, were pronounced by the Lady of Medjugorje, and compare them to the written reproductions made by historian René Laurentin and to the valid transcripts of the authentic audiotaped historical sources.

Then we will ask ourselves if those tamperings have been made with full knowledge of the facts and therefore relate to concealment and even duplicity.

*****

From omission to concealment to duplicity in one major writing from René Laurentin

Such heading bears an obvious gravity the wording of which I deem important to set in its proper context.

It must be clearly established that writings or their omissions — not the person of René Laurentin — are the target of the critical considerations that follow.

I have been particularly attentive to the graphical presentation of the found omissions.

The left column features the authentic source conformed to the criteria already clarified. On the French site, it was possible to reproduce alternately the primary fervent source (Klanac) and the primary critical source (Sivric), thus favoring impartiality. As far as I know, Darija Klanac’s book has not been translated into English. Thus for now, in the left column, will appear as reference the only English primary critical source. In the same left column, all the reproduced words in each of the numbered frames from 1 to 5 are mentioned without interruption. The bullets are there only to facilitate the parallel make up with the right column. Major omissions are in bold.

The right column quotes the words deemed worthy of being reproduced by mariologist René Laurentin in his writings.

Here is the reproduction of page 153 of the Chronological Corpus of the Messages which contains the words pronounced by the Lady of Medjugorje as revealed by the visionaries in the evening of June 30, 1981, and retained by historian Laurentin for that date.

To facilitate the reading and the understanding of the demonstration, I have identified the omission by an “O” inserted in a frame.

I will tell you, below, why I have chosen to include some words pronounced the day before (June 29, 1981).

Have a nice attentive reading!

Transcription: June 29, 1981 – Hidden Side…

IVANKA: The second question was how long she was going to remain with us.

Father ZOVKO: And?

IVANKA: As long as we wish, as long as we want.

[Hidden Side… p. 319 – Aux sources… p. 135]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

“How long will you stay with us?”

O

O

As long as you will want me to, my angels. [p. 152]

Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 1 -

Father ZOVKO: Please tell me in detail, what did you talk about with the Gospa?

¶ MIRJANA: I asked her how many [more] days she is going to stay with us, exactly how many [more] days she is going to stay with us. She said: “Three [more] days.”

¶ Father ZOVKO: More…

¶ MIRJANA: Three more days, which means until Friday.

Then, we asked her if she was angry because we left the hillside [Podbrdo] and because we came here to the other place. She said that she was not angry.

[Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 346 – Aux sources… p. 159-160]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

- 1 -

O

O

O

O

O

O

MIRJANA: “Are you angry that we were not on the hill?”

That doesn’t matter.

Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 2 -

¶ Father ZOVKO: Where is it?

MIRJANA: We left a marker over there where we’ve been.

Father ZOVKO: Was it near the road?

MIRJANA: Yes. Then we asked her if she would be angry if we don’t go to the hillside [Podbrdo] anymore but rather into the church. She was rather indecisive when we asked her this question. It looked as if she didn’t like it. But finally, she said she wouldn’t be angry.

ONE of the visionaries [Ivanka]: She would appear at the same time.

MIRJANA: She [the Gospa] asked about Ivan: “Where is the other boy“?

Father ZOVKO: Wait! Is that going to be in the church at 6:30 p.m.?

MIRJANA: Yes.

Father ZOVKO (very much surprised): What?

MIRJANA: That we may come to church at 6:30.

Father ZOVKO: When?

MIRJANA: Until Friday, which means Wednesday, Thursday, Friday.

Father ZOVKO: Therefore you, will be in the church tomorrow?

MIRJANA: Yes.

IVANKA (instead of Marija in the book: correction by the editor): …if she was going to leave a sign and at the end she said: “Go in God’s peace!”

[ Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 346-347 – Aux sources… p. 160-161]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

- 2 -

O

O

O

O

“Would you be angry if we would not return any longer to the hill, but we would wait in the church?”

O

O

Always at the same time.

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

Go in the peace of God.

Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 3 -

Father ZOVKO: What are you going to tell them?

MIRJANA: We’re going to tell the people that we saw the Gospa at the other place, that we have seen the light. We asked the Gospa about the church as a place of gathering. She told us so. We also asked her how many [more] days she was going to appear to us. Were going to tell the people everything, how it happened.

Father ZOVKO: When is she going to appear tomorrow?

MIRJANA: At the same time, at 7 p.m., in the church.

[ Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 355 – Aux sources… p. 167-168]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

- 3 -

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 4 -

Mica IVANKOVIC: The boy asked two questions and I don’t know who else asked the questions. Then they told us what they talked about. Then they said what she [the Gospa] answered and they asked two or three questions. Then I told them to ask if the Blessed Virgin Mary would be willing to appear in the church. They responded that she smiled and said that she would. Then Mirjana asked at what time. I didn’t ask them this. The Gospa said: “At the same time.” And she asked more. How many [more] times she was going to appear to them. They said in unison: “Three times.” Then Mirjana – I don’t remember now whether it was Mirjana or somebody else – asked [her] to leave a sign.

JAKOV: That was me.

[Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 361 – Aux sources… p. 184]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

- 4 -

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O


Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 1 -

Father ZOVKO: Please tell me in detail, what did you talk about with the Gospa?

MIRJANA: I asked her how many [more] days she is going to stay with us, exactly how many [more] days she is going to stay with us. She said: “Three [more] days.”

Father ZOVKO: More…

MIRJANA: Three more days, which means until Friday. Then, we asked her if she was angry because we left the hillside [Podbrdo] and because we came here to the other place. She said that she was not angry.

[ Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 346 – Aux sources… p. 159-160]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

-

-

-

-

- MIRJANA : “Are you angry that we were not on the hill?”

Answer: That doesn’t matter.

[p. 153]

Transcription: June 30, 1981 – Hidden Side…

- 5 -

Mica IVANKOVIC: Then only Mirjana asked: “At what time?” She [the Gospa] said: “At the same time!” Then Mirjana asked again how many more times she would appear. She said: “Three more times!”

? (most probably Father KOSIR): Who said that?

ONE of the visionaries: The Gospa.

? (most probably Father KOSIR): Which of you said that?

MIRJANA (most probably): I.

?:… (incomprehensible). Ivo Sivric’s remark: Everyone is talking at once.

Father ZOVKO: Well, this interests me. “Three more times!”. Well, when is all this going to end?

ALL the visionaries (in unison): on Friday.

Mica IVANKOVIC: Later on they said: “On Friday.”

Father ZOVKO: Where is it going to end on Friday?

JAKOV: In the church.

MIRJANA: Except perhaps if the Gospa tells us that she would prefer to appear on the hillside on the last day. We shall see.

[Hidden Side… Appendix 16, p. 371 – Aux sources… p. 159-160]

Laurentin: Chronological Corpus…

- 5 -

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

O

“On that day, Mirjana thought that she understood that the Gospa would return for three more days, until Friday. But it was only her interpretation.

*****

From absence to omission to concealment

“As long as you wish…”  — June 29th, 1981

“Three more days…” — June 30th, 1981

The question of June 29th is interesting – “Dear Madonna! How many days will you stay with us?” – and the answer, revealing: “As long as you wish.” (top of the table)

Let us note that Laurentin

•  identifies graphically (with italics) the “Virgin Mary’s answer”;

•  considers the question and its particular answer to be worthy of mention… He publishes and indexes them, acknowledging that the fate of the Lady of Medjugorje is linked to the desire or the wish of the youngsters.

In other words, if one accepts and retains the June 29th announcement, one must reject the June 30th “message” that becomes a threat to the construction made the day before.

The bifurcation,

— from absence – a distraction

— to omission – a lapse of memory

— to dissimulation – a concealment

is precisely here.

One must still back up with facts the conscious responsibility of the concealment made by René Laurentin.

Did the historian know the content of the interviews conducted by the Medjugorje pastoral personnel between June 27th and 30th, 1981, when he published his Chronological Corpus in 1988?

The answer is yes, according to his own admission in Latest News From Medjugorje, Number 7, 1988, p. 46:

I do not ignore these cas­settes, I use them step-by-step in my book “Account of the Apparitions” [Récit et message des apparitions, 1986] and, moreover, having had them translated by some Croatian friends, have proof that these interviews were carried out in dramatic and distressing conditions. […]

I was reassured that Father Sivric himself often interrupted this transcribing by noting “incomprehensible” (99 times for the interview of June 20th*). […]

Whoever has a critical sense can pry from these spontaneous interviews some useful elements, as I have tried to do in “Account.” [“Account”=Récit et message des apparitions, 1986]

* “unreassuring” corrections — Laurentin means “June 30th”, as the events began on June 24th. His counting of “99 times” is erroneous. In fact, there are “only” 37 “incomprehensible” for the whole 12 000-(twelve thousand)-word transcription.

Moreover, in the quoted Récit et message des apparitions (1986), p. 7, Laurentin confirms :

« J’ai accédé à des cassettes et à un film d’une des premières apparitions. » [“I have had access to cassettes and to a film of one of the first apparitions”]

Finally, in his preface of the book written by the Franciscan Yanko Bubalo Je vois la Vierge (1984), p. 12, the historian acknowledges the existence of the said audio-cassettes:

« Il [Yanko Bubalo] a écouté les bandes de magnétophone qui ont été enregistrées durant les toutes premières semaines. » [“He (Yanko Bubalo) has listened to the audiotapes that have been recorded during the very first weeks”. – Laurentin’s preface has not been reproduced in the English edition of Bubalo’s book entitled A Thousand Encounters with the Blessed Virgin Mary in Medjugorje (1987).]

Therefore, one may conclude and retain that, as soon as in 1984, René Laurentin

- has acknowledged the existence of the audiotaped interviews in question,

– has had them translated into French and has published some excerpts of them in his Récit et message des apparitions (1986),

– and knew their content well, before the publication of his Corpus in 1988.

Moreover, the historian has made his “mission” clear:

Our book has been assigned an appropriate and complementary task: to assemble into a “corpus”, according to chronological, order, all the available messages, (more than 500), to categorize them theologically and pastorally; to dispell apparently annoying objections, and thus to clarify their sense or meaning through the teaching of Our Lady.

[Chronological Corpus… p. 145 – underlined by LB]

At the risk of falsifying history…

Our analysis shows that historian Laurentin has not published “all the available messages” and has concealed, not “dispelled”, the major objection concerning the announcement of the end of the “apparitions” on July 3rd, 1981. As the so-called apparitions have been prolonged beyond the announced date, somebody must have been in error, either the presumed Gospa or the five “seers” who were present in the rectory while the parish priest conducted the interview.

Laurentin expertly “discerns” by eliminating the sentences that announce the end of the “apparitions”.  In the name of the consequentialist or utilitarist principle, the annoying objection must be concealed: the end justifies the means. The Gospa being in principle faultless, only one of the “seers” must be “blamed” and the group’s credibility shall be saved,  provided that the three Franciscan witnesses will keep silent on that intellectual forgery:

On that day, Mirjana thought that she understood that the Gospa would return for three more days, until Friday. But it was only her interpretation. [Chronological Corpus…, p. 153]

Is not that “justification” untruthful for anyone who makes the effort to read the original authentic source?

In fact, the historian knows that all witnesses

— the five attending visionaries (Ivan is absent), separately and in unison,

— the parish priest who conducts the interview,

— his two colleagues who intervene occasionally,

—the two ladies who accompany the youngsters,

all of the ten persons have said or understood, without ambiguity, that the Lady of Medjugorje would only return for three more days, until Friday.

The historical falsification with fallacious justification is evident and historian Laurentin is committing  concealment with full knowledge of the facts.

Laurentin’s inventive and deceitful “methodology”

Let’s examine the very peculiar and personal touch of the historian. Laurentin attributes directly or graphically, with italics, the “response of the Virgin Mary”.

For instance, when Mirjana says to Fr. Zovko:

Then, we asked her if she was angry because we left the hillside [Podbrdo] and because we came here to the other place. She said that she was not angry.

historian Laurentin narrates in his own inventive way:

MIRJANA: “Are you angry that we were not on the hill?”

That doesn’t matter.

and reshapes “dramatically” the scenario of “his” play.

Or when Mirjana explains:

MIRJANA: Yes. Then we asked her if she would be angry if we don’t go to the hillside [Podbrdo] anymore but rather into the church. She was rather indecisive when we asked her this question. It looked as if she didn’t like it. But finally, she said she wouldn’t be angry.

Laurentin truncates:

“Would you be angry if we would not return any longer to the hill, but we would wait in the church?”

because it would be improper to let the Gospa say that it would not please her to go to the church, or to be doubtful of her capacity to “trace” the co-visionary who is missing and whose name she “forgot”: “Where is the other boy?”…

Then mariologist-scenarist transforms Ivanka’s perception

ONE of the visionaries [Ivanka]: She would appear at the same time.

into a direct message:

Always at the same time.

As literary agent par excellence of the Lady of Medjugorje, Laurentin is working tirelessly. Soon, she will manifest her gratefulness through the “seer” Marija:

« Faites lire aux prêtres le livre de l’abbé Laurentin et divulguez-le. » [“Have the priests read Fr. Laurentin’s book and publicize it.”]

[Dernières nouvelles No 3, p. 27,

message from the Lady of Medjugorje to Marija, August 1st, 1984]

From concealment to duplicity

Let us be clear about these two words that refer to grave errors in the scientific domain as well as in the religious sphere: concealment and duplicity.

To conceal is “to place out of sight”, to “prevent disclosure or recognition of”… the truth.

Duplicity is “a contradictory doubleness of thought, speech, or action; especially: the belying of one’s true intentions by deceptive words or action”.

Falsification of history brings severe consequences within the scientific community: the loss of credibility for its author and the rejection by the latter’s peers of all his publications, past, present and future. It should not be different within the Church.

Writings intended for the faithful, all the more so, should conform to rigorous criteria of historical truthfulness and to the respect of the “rules of the game“. One observes that historian Laurentin tramples about them while claiming to the contrary.

Unfortunately, the altered medjugorjean vulgate both deceived and betrayed all: readers, sincere pilgrims and experts of the third Commission to whom it had been sent:

In order to show the non-official character of the apparitions, (since the Commission of Inquiry of the Bishops’ Conference has not completed its work), and in order not to anticipate the conclusion of these tasks which are being accomplished in discretion, Cardinal Kuharic has asked the pastor of Medjugorje on September 17th, 1987, that the messages not be proclaimed from the altar, and that they not have official dissemination. Private dissemination of these messages, which everyone agrees to acknowledge to be orthodox and fruitful, remains authorized. The publication of this corpus maintains this private character.

It brings a service to those whom these apparitions have converted, or involved; and to the studies of the Commission, a publication which is better organized, better dated, more exact, and thus an historical and theological clarification, useful to dispel the ambiguities of the transmission.

It is in this spirit that we dedicate this file to the Commission, and to its president, who has indeed offered thanks for my private work as an expert to the service of the common ecclesiastical research for truth.” [p. 146-147; underlined by LB]

René Laurentin has published more than 3 000 (three thousand) pages only on Medjugorje

─ not counting the translations in many languages, his articles in other works, papers and periodicals on the same topic. His fabricated vulgate on that case, with the support of the Medjugorje pastoral personnel, predominates in the literature and on the blogs that propagate the messages of the Lady of Medjugorje.

I wonder how much of an impact such falsifications and duplicity have had and will have on

─ the credibility of the Church,

─ the credibility of mariology,

─ the representation of the Virgin Mary,

─ the credibility of the Medjugorje pastoral personnel and of the visionaries,

─ the behaviour of sincere pilgrims and the credibility of eminent visitors in Medjugorje, and

─ the good judgement of the experts of the Ruini Commission, the fourth one, who deliberate at the present time?

*******

« La vraie religion ne se développe que sur un fond d’honnêteté humaine »

[“True religion only develops on the basis of human honesty”]

Bible de Jérusalem,

Introduction aux Proverbes, p. 800

The concealment of the “Three more days” is a fragment of what I would call the anti-history of Medjugorje, the expression of medjugorjean negationism that expurgates words, texts and documents that represent a threat to a so-called good cause.

In the next article, we will examine other subterfuges and artifices concerning the first ten days of the events and their justification by the major promoter of the Lady of Medjugorje.

Your commentaries are welcome, except the “anonymous” ones that will be discarded.

With my cordial greetings,

Louis Bélanger