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August 12, 1988     The Message
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4 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana August 12, 1988 Medjugorje American C000000Lholics targeted for travel to site of Marian apparitions By CINDY WOODEN NC News Service WASHINGTON (NC) -- Religious-travel agencies former Medjugorje pilgrims -- and even the Yugoslavian government's tourist office -- want American Cathoics to find lists of Medjugorje speakers, peace Masses and travel adver- tisements. But some bishops and newspaper editors have decided that since the Vatican has not ruled on the authentici- ty of the apparations, they won't run ads promoting pilgrimages to the site. Almost 235,000 U.S. citizens went to Yugoslavia in 1987, ac- cording to a tourism office funded by the Yugoslavian government. That is a 58 per- cent increase over 1986 -- a down year because of the Cher- nobyl nuclear accident in the Soviet Union -- and about the same number as in 1984 when the Winter Olympics were held in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, said Marie Matko, director of public relations for the tourism office. "We felt it should be more," Marks said. "Now with the help of Medjugorje, we hope it is more." Matko said the government estimates that Medjugorje was the destination of 10 percent to 15 percent of the U.S. tourists entering Yugoslavia last year. Select International, one of the top 10 U.S. travel agencies serving Yugoslavia, brought 9,000 people from the United States to Medjugorje last year, said Edita Krunic, manager of the Westchester, N.Y., agency. About 70 percent of her com- pany's business is travel to Medjugorje, she said. "We also are doing Fatima, Lourdes and Rome." The majority of Medjugorje travelers come from New Orleans, Texas, California, Phoenix, Ariz., Florida, New York, Boston and Chicago, Ms. g_runic said. Select International makes "arrangements for travel, meals, hotels and appointments with the visionaries and priests," she said. The visionaries are six young people who first reported see- !i!!i!00/Y000000ii!iJiJi American National Bank Bicknell - Sandborn Vincennes Drive-in Facilities - Member F.D.I.C. A Full Service Bank ing and hearing Mary in 1981. They say the daily apparitions continue. The local bishop in Medjugorje has said the appari- , tions are not legitimate, but a neighboring archbishop points to spiritual renewal among many as a result of visits to the village. A church commission is studying the situation. The apparitions are "still controversial," Ms. Krunic said, noting that some Catholic newspapers will not accept advertising for Medjugorje and some priests have declined trips there as spiritual directors of the tours. The Advocate, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Newark, N.J., is one paper that will not run the ads. "There are people who see an ad in The Advocate and say it must be approved" if it's in the archdiocese's official paper, said Robert B. Dylak, Advocate publisher. "We have a respon- sibility to people who believe US." Some of the other Catholic newspapers which won't ac- cept Medjugorje ads until the church rules that Catholics may believe in the apparitions in- clude: The Catholic Key, newspaper of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Ms.; The Texas Catholic Herald, Diocese of Galveston-Houston; The Mirror, Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, Ms.; Catholic East Texas of the Tyler Diocese; The Bayou Catholic, Diocese of Houma- Thibodaux, La.; and Northwest Indiana Catholic of the Gary Diocese. The Tidings, newspaper of the Archiocese of Los Angeles, does accept ads "offering travel to a destination called Med- jugorje," said A1 Antczak, managing editor. "We take care that the ad makes no claims as to the authenticity of what's happening there." Several other Catholic newspapers accept the Med- jugorie ads, most with the same condition that the ads don't claim the visions are authentic nor give the impression that they are offering an official pilgrimage. They include: The Catholic Sun, newspaper of the Diocese of Phoenix, Ariz.i San Francisco Catholic, magazine of the San Francisco Archdiocese; Clarion Herald, Archdiocese of New Orleans; The Texas Catholic, Diocese of Dallasl and The Voice, Archdiocese of Miami. The U.S. bishops have not made an official statement on the apparitions. Bishop Charles V. Grahmann of Victoria, Texas, said the bishops of his state agreed last fall "that we would not push or advertise diocesan pilgrimages" to Medjugorie. Some Texas bishops have banned temporarily all Med- jugorje ads from their papers pending the outcome of church investigations. Bishop Grahmann said the October 1987 decision was in response to requests from the Yugoslavian bishops and the Vatican that official ---_- __ _ _   --  - .:.::.-> r ..::::...::?:..:.):.:.:.:, .. ?.=:...,:..>w.: ::-.:.:.: ,:.>::;:-;..,.:(;, ,. v.:,:.:.::.:;:,:%.'::? >:.::.:.:.. '.::;:.:....>x,:.::.z '. '.:.,,:.. :-::.:.::.:.:.... ';.;.:.:.. 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"You have people who don't understand the Profession of Faith they say at Mass, but they're running off to Medjugorje" and proclaim- ing the messages as true. Bishop Norbert F. Gaughan of Gary, Ind., believes confusion may result from some of the statements attributed to Mary at Medjugorje. "There are those who want us to accept these private revelations as if they had value equal to the inspired and revealed words of God," he wrote Oct. 4, 1987, in his diocesan newspaper, the Northwest Indiana Catholic. While apparitions, such as those reported in Yugoslavia, "satisfy the need for devotions, which for Some appear to have disappeared from the parishes 'because of' Vatican II," he said, the messages sometimes contain sentiments contrary to Catholic belief. "Mary, 'most vengeful, most angry' seems to have been substituted" for Mary, 'most loving, most kind,'" Bishop Gaughan wrote. "All ap- pearances call for penanc almost all predict an imminent cataclysm. ;" The bishop added that some of the messages "create an us vs. them mentality; the world is hostile and evil." Other bishops, such as New Orleans Archbishop Philip M. Hannan, note that people who have returned from Medjugorje have an increased devotion to prayer and the Mass, regularly receive the sacrament of recon- ciliation and perform good works. ,- BARBEQ1urE RIBS'CHICKEN PORK-BEEF INSIDE DINING=BURGOO COMPLETE CARRY'OUT SERVICE CLOSED ON MONDAYS 425-1616 3119 W, MARYLAND FOR THE BEST PLUMBING SERVICE RESIDENTIAL COMMERCIAL (FREE ESTIMATES) GRANT PLUMBING CO. 484 S. GOVERNOR AT CANAL Ph. 424-2441 Spaldings Food Land 2100 Stringtown 1 71 3 E. Morgan 41 1 S. Barker Visit Our Complete Delicatesn Prime Cuts Of Beef Evansville Wet Heat & Piping Co. Inc. New & Used Boilers, Furnaces Repair & Replacement 4244)991 8oo E. 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