More as it develops. For now, a basic summary is in order.
Peric begins by recalling the image of the Church as the pillar and bulwark of the truth, followed by the basic fact of all the commissions established to examine the “Medjugorje Phenomenon.” Recalling these, he then states that the position of the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno is that Medjugorje is not a place where Our Lady is appearing (non si tratta di vere apparizioni della Beata Vergine Maria).
Peric then answers an observation that perhaps the earlier apparitions were good but not later ones. He denies this claim by presenting information about the early years, having recourse to early interviews and recordings. He provides several areas of concern, each with a description, that go as follows:
- An Ambiguous Figure (Una figura ambigua): Bishop Peric discusses some strange aspects about the entity appearing in Medjugorje such as strange laughs, obeying the seers, a veil being trampled upon.
- A Strange Shaking (Uno strano tremito): Peric recounts how Ivan noticed the hands of the “apparition” were shaking. I recall that Donal Foley wrote about this matter in Medjugorje Revisited.
- False Anniversary (Anniversario fasullo): The actual date of the first “apparition” was June 24th, 1981, but it is considered by some to be June 25th because all six “visionaries” were present on the 25th. Peric takes exception to this later date , calling it “falsified” (falsificata).
- Invisible/Visible Child (Bambino in/visibile): Peric relays differences in accounts from the “visionaries.”
- Misleading Sign (Segno ingannevole): Peric discusses various signs that allegedly prove it is Our Lady (such as a clock sign) but it is not.
- Inexplicable Silence (Silenzio inspiegabile): Peric discusses a point about how there was no dialogue at first, only then to change to later ambiguous verbal or bodily communication(s).
- Strange Messages (Messaggi strani): Peric references how there is no stated express purpose, no justification, for the alleged apparitions given in the early days. There are, however, some vague references that do not make sense and are indicative of “imagination and invention” (Immaginazione e invenzione)
- False Prophecies about False Apparitions (Profezie false su apparizioni false): Here, Peric discusses the matter of the statement from the “apparition” that only three days remain for the “visions.” Obviously, they have continued over 35 years.
- Diverse Dresses (Vesti diverse): Peric references the different dress of the “apparition.”
- More Nervousness than Peace (Più nervosismo che pace): Peric discusses the behavior (passing out) of the visionaries on June 26th, 1981.
- Scandalous Touchings (Toccamenti scandalosi): Here is discussed the “visionaries” touching the alleged apparition. More is said on the trampling of the veil.
- Intentional Manipulations (Manipolazioni intenzionali): Peric references that even Fr. Zovko was concerned about the fact of there being no specific message for the people and the Friars. Also discussed is the matter of the location for the “apparitions.” Peric claims that it is not the Gospel of Christ to choose where Our Lady will appear.
Peric concludes by saying:
Taking into account all that has been examined and studied by this Diocesan Chancery, including the study of the first seven days of the alleged apparitions, people (può) can peacefully say: The Madonna has not appeared in Medjugorje! This is the truth that we support, and we believe in the word of Jesus, according to which the truth will set us free (cf. Jn 8:32).
All in all, given the recent announcement of the Special Envoy of the Holy Father to Medjugorje, one must ask whether or not a decision is soon coming on Medjugorje? Why would Peric release such a document in the light of this fact (esp. canon 139:2) when said Envoy has spoken highly of Medjugorje? Does Peric know something we don’t?
To be continued….