A truly good piece from Fr. Dwight Longenecker on 4 Signs of cult-like behavior, complete with some remedies.
4 Danger Signs of Cult-Like Behavior, and 4 Antidotes
One of the creepiest things about religion is the tendency for those involved to drift into cult-like behaviors. When I say “cult-like behavior” I don’t simply mean a crazed, enclosed group who commit mass suicide, set up a 24/7 watch for aliens or who live on berries, granola and meditation.
Those are the wacky extremes. The underlying behaviors can manifest in every sort of religion. A subgroup develops and the members and leaders start behaving in a particularly recognizable way. They may not be extremists outwardly, but their group behavior is still cult-like.
How can you tell if a religious group is operating like a cult? It’s difficult because the people in a religious group can behave like a cult without them becoming a full-blown, identifiable religious cult.
Catholic News Agency has a great interview with the grand niece of (soon to be) Saints Francisco & Jacinta Marto. Her name is Jacinta Pereiro Marto.
Niece of Fatima visionaries reflects on her remarkable family
Fatima, Portugal, Apr 20, 2017 / 06:00 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The niece of Blessed Franciso and Jacinta Marto has voiced excitement for the coming canonization of her relatives, sharing stories of the time of the Fatima apparitions and personal memories of what it was like growing up in a family that had saints among its members.
“My family, my grandparents, my parents, all of us always accepted it as a gift from God,” Jacinta Pereiro Marto told CNA in an interview.
“God chose my uncle and aunt because this is what he wanted, so much that my grandfather used to say that the Virgin wanted to come to Fatima and she chose his children, but that we didn’t deserve anything,” she said.
It is my honor to announce that I will be presenting a paper at the upcoming Thinking Fatima Congress at the Sanctuary of Fátima this June 21-24, 2017.
The title of my paper is On Imaginary Visions in the Theological Commentary of Cardinal Ratzinger.
If you are able to make it, please do come and listen. There are many excellent talks that will be at this Congress. Not all are available in English, especially the individual language-group presentations. Nevertheless, there are plenty of bi-lingual people who are quite kind and may be willing to discuss summaries of the presentations with others.
The Congress will be a month after the canonization of Blesseds Francisco & Jacinta. I shall pray for all of you at their tombs.
Bishop Ratko Peric has accused renowned exorcist Fr. Gabriele Amorth and his former assistant of censoring damaging information concerning the Medjugorje phenomenon.
In an article dated January, 2010 and entitled, “Questionable Games Surrounding the Great Sign”, Peric discusses the history of statements made by the alleged visionaries concerning the sign to be left in Medjugorje. During this history, Peric states Fr. Amorth, along with fellow exorcist Fr. Smiljan Dragan Kožul, “censored” a remark by alleged visionary Vicka Ivankovic-Mijatovic to author Fr. Janko Bubalo.
From June, 1981 to the present, six people from Medjugorje (Bosnia-Hercegovina) have been claiming to see the Virgin Mary. Over these 31 or so years, much controversy has arisen concerning the origin of these claims. Lies, scandal, slander, disobedience and accusations that the alleged visionaries are being handled by the local Franciscans form a forgotten (and covered-up) side of Medjugorje’s history.
Originally published atCatholic Laneon December 28, 2012. This article had been translated into Croatian and published in the publication “Crkva na kamenu” (The Church on the Rock) at this URL address, though it is no longer available.
On the British tabloid Daily Mail Online, there recently appeared an article by Chris Rogers and Marshall Corwin concerning the six alleged seers of Medjugorje. Rogers and Corwin write a fairly simple article that recounts some basic history of Medjugorje. It also mixes the authors’ own experience with Medjugorje and the alleged seers. I would like to take the opportunity to respond to some questionable statements made by Rogers and Corwin in their article.
While following political developments, I became nonplussed but could not name why. As I was puzzling-out my thoughts, I unexpectedly received assistance from the Servant of God, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. I would like to share my observations and reflect for a moment on the place of politics in society.