I know this post is paradoxical.
On one hand I am highly recommending the talk being given by a priest who owes his faith and vocation to the Apparitions in Medjugorje and on the other hand, I am highly recommending the book written by Donal Foley that may shock it's followers in it's honest criticism of a highly popular apparition site.
I wanted to share with my readers Fr. Andrew Grace's speaking engagement that is coming up in Arizona.
Fr. Grace is a priest from Australia who had a successful career as an engineer before he reverted to the Catholic Church. He owes his conversion to Gospa. We became friendly when he emailed me about visiting in Hawaii. He has been here a couple of times and hope to see him again this year.
I would highly recommend him to those of you who have an opportunity to hear him speak. He is scheduled to appear in August along with Fr. Donald Calloway, another very dynamic speaker. You may remember that my family and I heard Fr. Calloway speak at our Divine Mercy Conference last year.
The Mir Center of Arizona Marian ConferenceSource: 2007 Marian Conferences
Place: Doubletree resort in Scottsdale, AZ
Dates: August 24-26th, 2007
Speakers: Invited: Fr. Andrew Grace, Fr. Don Calloway, Char Vance, Fr. Doug Lorig, Fr. Jack Spaulding, Fr. Jozo Grbes, Tom Booth
The other thing I wanted to share with you was an email I received from Donal Foley of Theotokos Books and author of the book Understanding Medjugorje. The following is being shared with Donal's permission:
News release for 26th anniversary of first Medjugorje visions – 22 June 2006
Understanding Medjugorje: Heavenly Visions or Religious Illusion? (Theotokos Books), by Donal Anthony Foley, was published just over a year ago but there has yet to be any cogent criticism of it.
This is the latest review (15 June 2007) by Michael Rose, the author of the bestselling Goodbye Good Men.
"Although the subtitle of Donal Anthony Foley's Understanding Medjugorje is Heavenly Visions or Religious Illusion? there is no question in the mind or writing of the author that the answer is "illusion." Add to that, fraud and deceit. The alleged visions of the Blessed Virgin Mary in a backwater town of former Yugoslavia (now Bosnia-Herzegovina) since 1981 continue to attract religious thrill seekers in droves.
"What most Medjugorje pilgrims don't know, suggests Foley, is the sordid history surrounding the visionaries and the the religious order that has promoted the alleged visions over the past quarter century. Sexual scandal, ecclesial disobedience, an attack on the local bishop, and outright fraud are just some of the compelling reasons to question the authenticity of the visions and the motives of its promoters.
"Unlike previous slovenly-written attempts by other authors to expose the Medjugorje deception, Foley's offering provides an informative, compelling and persuasive argument to give Medjugorje a wide berth."
New Oxford Review Bookmarks at: www.newoxfordreview.org/bookmarks-1.jsp
Donal Anthony Foley has been researching Marian apparitions since the mid- 1990s. He lives in Nottingham, England, has degrees in Humanities (BA) and Theology (BD), and his book on the subject – Marian Apparitions, the Bible, and the Modern World – was published by Gracewing in 2002. He has written articles for a number of Catholic magazines, including the Homiletic and Pastoral Review, and also maintains a website at: www.theotokos.org.uk
Tel: 07817 839415
Theotokos Books, PO Box 8570, Nottingham, NG10 9AB, England
Understanding Medjugorje is available through the Theotokos site, internet booksellers and by ordering direct from booksellers.
Understanding Medjugorje , is based on an analysis/assessment of transcripts of tapes of the visionaries made during the first week or so of the visions, which began in late June 1981. This June sees the 26th "anniversary" of the first vision, and lately Medjugorje has been once more in the news - but for all the wrong reasons!
A press release from Bishop Peric's Office in Mostar, dated 18 June 2007, reveals that Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa OFM Cap., Preacher of the Papal Household, will now not be attending a retreat due to be held in Medjugorje at the beginning of July 2007, after he was denied permission to preach there by Bishop Peric, the local Ordinary.
Fr. Jozo Zovko was also part of the publicity for this event, and yet, as the press release confirms, he has, since 2004, been relieved of all priestly faculties in the territory of the dioceses of Herzegovina.
According to the Catholic News Service , "Bishop Peric vehemently opposes claims that Mary has appeared in the village almost 40,000 times in the last 26 years and last year complained personally to Pope Benedict XVI that priests from overseas were ignoring the wishes of the local bishops not to go on pilgrimages there."
For more details of this story, please see:
All this means that Understanding Medjugorje is just as relevant as it was last year!
More information, including extracts, is available at:
For review copies and trade orders please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
(For trade terms please see: www.theotokos.org.uk/pages/books/termscon.html )
To order Understanding Medjugorje at a price of $28.95, including shipping and handling, by credit card, via the secure 2Checkout.com site, please visit:
Understanding Medjugorje is paperback-softcover, Demy Octavo size (8.5 in. x 5.5 in.), has 23 chapters, 310 pages, and a comprehensive index.
Price: £12.95 / $19.95 / €19.95 ISBN 0955074606