In the simplicity that is the hallmark of all the visionaries, Marija sums up the results found in the testing by saying, “Sometimes we laugh together, at the end of ends, we have it written in black and white that we are normal and so many people live without such a proof. So it ends in a joke…”
June 27, 1981
The fourth day after the apparitions began in Medjugorje, a local doctor by the name of Dr. Ante Bijevic examined the visionaries for the first time as arranged by the police in nearby Citluk. His observations were that the children were well balanced.
June 29, 1981
Two days later the children were taken to a psychiatric clinic in Mostar, the nearest city, by the police. A psychiatrist, Dr. Dzudza Mulija, examined them and concluded that the children were normal. According to Vicka, Dr. Dzudza stated: “It is the people who brought you here that are insane. You are absolutely normal.” (1)
Four months after the beginning of the apparitions in Medjugorje, Croatian psychiatrist, Nikola Bartulica, interviewed Vicka for over an hour and a half. He drew the same conclusion as the other professionals, that Vicka was normal.
Fr. Slavko Barbaric, a doctor of social psychology and a Franciscan priest, examined all six visionaries. Fr. Slavko’s findings were also very positive in describing the behavior of the Medjugorje visionaries. He concluded that there was no sign of hallucination and that the children behaved independently from each other. Fr. Slavko would later become more involved in the lives of the visionaries and the parish of Medjugorje.
Dr. Ludvik Stopar was the first doctor to examine the visionaries while in a state of ecstasy. Dr. Stopar is a psychiatrist and parapsychologist from Slovenia. He visited Medjugorje four times: in May 1982, November 1982, June 1983, and November 1983. Through his testing, Dr. Stopar became convinced that the children were normal. He also came to believe that the experience of the children was supernatural.
Dr. Mario Botta, with a team of Italian doctors established that the heartbeats of the visionaries were normal. This test among a number of other clinical tests implied that the apparitions did not affect physiological reality in any way.
Aug. 23-25, 1983
Dr. Phillipe Madre is the founder and director of a clinic for research on the interplay of somatic, psychological and supernatural forces. He was, therefore, well qualified to examine the facts, though he visited Medjugorje more as a deacon than a doctor. His visit was cut short when he was arrested by police and deported on the day after their arrival. Because of this he could only report generally his impressions. It was his opinion that the visionaries were sound in mind and body, and he added, also in their spiritual development.
Dr. Botta, a heart surgeon from Milan, returned to Medjugorje to carry out an electrocardiogram on Ivan. Again, he concluded “that ecstasy does not suppress normal physiology but somehow transcends it.” (2)
The year 1984 the visionaries were tested in Medjugorje by a large number of Italian experts, working independently from each other. Included within this group were Dr. Maria Frederica Magatti, Dr. Lucia Capello, Dr. Enzo Gabrici and Prof. Anna-Maria Franchini. None of them found anything that would imply doubt in their testimony.
An extremely important and comprehensive series of tests was conducted by a team of French doctors, using highly sophisticated equipment they brought to Medjugorje. Their visits were short in duration, but frequent trips were made to Medjugorje between March and December 1984. Professor Henri Joyuex was the head of the team, a Professor of Cancerology in the Faculty of Medicine at Montpellier and a surgeon at Montpellier’s Cancer Institute. The conclusion he reached from the data collected from their scientific tests was impressive:
“…the phenomenon…is scientifically inexplicable…” (3)
Sept. 7,8 & 9, 1985
A team of scientists from Italy, directed by Dr. Luigi Frigerio, came to Medjugorje with more detailed testing and sophisticated equipment. Among them was a neuro-physiologist who specialized in the study of “ecstasy”, by the name of Professor Margnelli.
On October 20, 1985 the Bishop Of Mostar’s Commissioner’s report stated, in regards to the Medjugorje apparitions, that the foreign doctor’s testimonies were inadmissible, no matter how sophisticated their technology, because they did not speak Serbo-Croatian and had to rely on interpreters.
Jan. 14, 1986
A team of seventeen renowned natural scientists, doctors, psychiatrists and theologians came to a 12-point conclusion on the tests administered by the international French-Italian scientific theological commission concerning the extraordinary events that are taking place in Medjugorje. It was the most competent and thorough collection of scientific data assembled up to this point. Click to French-Italian Commission’s 12-Point Conclusion-January 14, 1986
April - Dec. 1998
At the request of the Parish Office in Medjugorje, the visionaries were asked, once again to go through a battery of tests. Heading the team was Dr. Andreas Resch, Professor of Theology at the Papal University Alfonsianum in Rome and an expert for “twilight realms of science.” They repeated the experiments of the French experts (1984) and the Italian experts (1985), only on a wider scale. As this study was of an equal or greater magnitude as the 1984 and 1985 studies, it became known as the “Medjugorje 3” work group.
June 25, 2005
On the 24th anniversary of the apparitions, the most recent examination was performed, at the request of the Holy See. It brought together again visionaries Ivan and Marija of Medjugorje and Professor Henri Joyeau with a French team of experts, who were given the opportunity to compare the scientific studies of 20 years ago with the present day experiences of the visionaries. Their conclusions were the same and confirmed the results of the testing that took place in 1984-85.
1. Scientific & Medical Studies on the Apparitions at Medjugorje, p. 12
2. Ibid., p. 15