When Marija Pavlović Confessed That She Had Invented a Message
by Marco Corvaglia
A twentytwo-year-old Marija Pavlović and father Tomislav Vlašić, at the time of events told in this page
Our Lady has made a program for the community "Queen of Peace, We Are Entirely Yours; To Jesus through Mary", and leads this community through Father Tomislav and Agnes, who receives the messages for the Community.
This is declared, in writing, by the "seer" Marija Pavlović on April 21, 1988.
But, three months later she will confess to having lied.
This is the substance of the facts that now we will reconstruct and prove by documents.
On March 25, 1988, Tomislav Vlašić, who had been the first spiritual director of the visionaries, wrote a long open letter by which he made known the foundation, in Italy, of a religious community he directed himself and - he said - specifically requested by Our Lady.
That letter was published the following month in Milan in a 17-page pamphlet entitled Una chiamata nell’Anno Mariano ("An Appeal In the Marian Year"), on the initiative of that community. This had taken the name Kraljice Mira, potpuno tvoji, po Mariji k Isusu ( "Queen of Peace, We Are Entirely Yours To Jesus Through Mary") and took place in Mentana Avenue, 45, Parma, Italy.
The printing and the spread of the booklet "in all the main languages" [Una chiamata nell'Anno Mariano, p.1], was entrusted to the Associazione Amici di Medjugorje (“Friends of Medjugorje Association") established in Via Nirone 9, Milan (chaired by Mrs. Angela Pecorari Piazza).
In the publication at issue Vlašić reconstructs the vicissitudes of the community’s birth, returning with the story in 1983:
The visionary of Medjugorje Jelena Vasilj [she joined in December 1982 the six visionaries, with the full consent of those], who has interior locutions and visions came to me on May 28, 1983, and asked me to witness apparition of the Mother of God that she had in her house. She said that Our Lady wanted to confide something to me.
I witnessed the apparition. Our Lady, through the visionary, spoke to me and asked to gather a prayer group, mostly composed by young people, ready to completely dedicate themselves to Her, and asked me, as a priest, to direct the group in this way.
Before the group began to have regular encounters, Marija Pavlović, one of the six visionaries, to whom Our Lady has been appearing since 1981, wanted to see if this really was a project of the Madonna, and asked Mary some questions during an apparition.
She received a positive response: Our Lady said that this was her project, and recommended to the six visionaries, according to their possibilities, to participate in the prayer group. Since then Marija is a member of this group.
[Una chiamata nell'Anno Mariano ("An Appeal..."), pp. 3-4]
Later on, between 1985 and 1986, Jesus and Mary allegedly directly asked the same Franciscan and the visionaries (and then to a German friend of Vlašić, named Agnes Heupel) to turn the prayer group in a real religious community:
From autumn 1985 our Lord and our Heavenly Mother spoke to me in the heart in a special way. They also gave me special messages through the visionaries. They asked total renunciation and ready willingness to their plan.
On 7 December 1986, while we all prayed the rosary, meditating on the Joyful Mysteries, Jesus gave a message to Agnes, in which he announced the birth of a new community where we have to offer us both to God, as Clare and Francis.
[Una chiamata nell’Anno Mariano, cit. ("An Appeal..."), pp. 4-5]
And let us come to the decisive point (hereafter the page of the original document):
I also asked an external confirmation. Among other things I asked Mary a question through Marija Pavlović. Marija has reported omit the Our Lady's reply of 8 March 1987: "This is God's plan."
[Una chiamata nell’Anno Mariano, cit. ("An Appeal..."), p. 6. Cf. Ogledalo Pravde. Biskupski ordinarijat u Mostaru o navodnim ukazanjima i porukama u Međugorju (The Diocesan Curia Of Mostar On The Alleged Apparitions and Messages Of Medjugorje), Mostar, 2001, p. 29]
The community of Vlašić was then opened and settled, as mentioned, in Parma.
Marija herself joined it and on April 21, 1988 she wrote and signed a statement (in Croatian and in Italian): La mia testimonianza ("My Declaration"), published in the same booklet Una chiamata nell’Anno Mariano.
Here is the Marija's declaration:
Let us draw attention to some passages. In particular, the seer, who was twenty-two years old, writes - with an express reference to the open letter of Father Tomislav Vlašić (emphasis added):
Also I feel the need to say a few words about this information that Father Tomislav has witten [Marija therefore knows the text written by Vlašić] [....].
Since its formation I have joined the prayer group that Our Lady has guided through Jelena Vasilj and Father Tomislav Vlasic. [....]
I saw that messages that came through Jelena clarify and complete messages that Our Lady gave to me.
At the beginning of this year I retired in silence with some people of that prayer group. Some time before departure [to Parma], one day, before the apparition we prayed Our Lady to give us the light to understand the program that she had given through Father Tomislav Vlasic and Agnes Heupel.
Our Lady came, she was happy. She prayed over all us and said: "Dear children, I give you a special gift, the gift of freedom so that you can decide for God. I bless the free decision of each of you." So it was clear I could make up my own mind on this way, since I was waiting for the opportunity to be able to withdraw in silence and prayer.
As you can see, the Madonna has made a program for the Community "Queen of Peace, Totally Yours, To Jesus Through Mary," and guides this community through Father Tomislav and Agnes, who receives the messages for the Community.
I have been staying in the Community for over a month and a half...
[Una chiamata nell'Anno Mariano, cit. ("An Appeal..."), pp. 15-16. Cf. R. Laurentin, Dernières nouvelles de Medjugorje, No 8, O.E.I.L., Paris, 1989, p. 51 and Ogledalo Pravde. Biskupski ordinarijat u Mostaru o navodnim ukazanjima i porukama u Međugorju (The Diocesan Curia Of Mostar On The Alleged Apparitions and Messages Of Medjugorje), Mostar, 2001, p. 29]
In essence, Marija does not refute the veracity of the open letter written by Vlašić (containing, as we have seen, the explicit approval of the birth of the Community by Our Lady: Maria has reported the Lady's reply of 8 March 1987: "This and a plan of God") and explicitly confirms that Our Lady guides the community and gives messages to Agnes.
At the beginning of next July, a U.S. journalist, Suzanne Rini, sent by the Catholic periodical, Fidelity, arrived in Italy and insisted that Father Vlašić was involved in a scabrous matter (the birth, eleven years before, of Sister Rufina [Manda K.]’s son). The Franciscan declared himself unaware of the facts [cf. E. Michael Jones, The Medjugorje Deception, Fidelity Press, South Bend, 1998, pp. 141-143].
Whatever the case, a few days later, on 11 July 1988, something unexpected occurred: Marija (maybe fearing that she has been compromised by giving the support of the Madonna to a friar involved in a scandal?) wrote in Croatian and in Italian, a new, dramatic, statement, fully quoted in the Croatian version, in the official publication of the Curia of Mostar Ogledalo Pravde. Biskupski ordinarijat u Mostaru o navodnim ukazanjima i porukama u Međugorju.
Here it is (emphasis added):
I am in a moral need to make before God, the Virgin and the Church of Jesus Christ, the following statements:
1 From the texts "An Appeal in the Marian Year" and from the declaration that bears my signature, it appears that I have reported as Our Lady’s response to a request of Father Tomislav: "This is a plan of God"; that is, it appears that I have given to Father Tomislav, from Our Lady, an explicit confirmation and approval of the undertaking and of the program begun in Italy with the prayer group from Medjugorje.
2 Now I declare that I have never asked Our Lady for any confirmation for this undertaking begun by Father Tomislav and Agnes Heupel. I never explicitly asked, for me, if I had to be part of this undertaking and I never received any instruction from the Madonna about the group, except that everyone of us should be free to choose for his life.
3 From the texts and from the declaration that bears my signature it appears that Our Lady showed me that the community and the program of Father Tomislav and Agnes Heupel was the way that God chose for me and for the others. Now, I repeat that I never received from Our Lady, nor did I give to Father Tomislav or to any other person, such a confirmation and instruction by the Virgin Mary.
4 The declaration, published in Croatian and Italian, does not correspond to the truth about the first initiative. Personally, I had no desire to make any written statement. Father Tomislav insistently suggested to me to write, as a seer, a declaration that the world was waiting for.
5 I also declare that the contents, as they are presented, and my signature, raise some questions. For the time being, I can give to all the possible questions only this answer: that I give, as I repeat, before God, the Virgin Mary and the Church of Jesus Christ: "Everything that can be perceived as a confirmation and an explicit approval of the undertaking of Fr Tomislav and Agnes Heupel, given by Madonna through me, is totally not in conformity with the truth, as well as it is not in conformity with the truth that I had a spontaneous desire to write that declaration."
6 I consider a moral obligation to repeat, again before God, the Virgin Mary and the Church the following statement:
After seven years of daily apparitions, after the most intimate experience I have of the delicacy and prudence of the Madonna, after all that I can remember about the advice of the Madonna, and about the Madonna’s answers to my personal questions, I can say that it is not possible to argue that the heavenly plan and the overall message of Our Lady in Medjugorje have, as an holy consequence and as a connection desired by the Madonna, the undertaking and the program begun in Italy by Father Tomislav and Agnes Heupel.
It is also necessary to add here that the daily apparitions continue.
I am signing this declaration in front of the Blessed Sacrament and I am sending it to all those who are related, at heart, to the work of Our Lady in Medjugorje.
11 July 1988
[Ogledalo Pravde. Biskupski ordinarijat u Mostaru o navodnim ukazanjima i porukama u Međugorju (The Diocesan Curia Of Mostar On The Alleged Apparitions and Messages Of Medjugorje), Mostar, 2001, pp. 30-31, and R. Laurentin, Dernières nouvelles de Medjugorje, No 8, O.E.I.L., Paris, 1989, pp. 51-52].
Here is the second page of the letter (Croatian version) containing Marija's signature:
Updated on 12 August 2009
Copyright © Marco Corvaglia. All rights reserved