At the ordinary session of the Bishops' Conference of Yugoslavia in Zadar from April 9 - 11, 1991 the following was adopted:
The bishops, from the very beginning, have been following the events of Medjugorje through the Bishop of the diocese (Mostar), the Bishop's Commission and the Commission of the Bishops Conference of Yugoslavia on Medjugorje.
On the basis of the investigations, so far it cannot be affirmed that one is dealing with supernatural apparitions and revelations.
However, the numerous gatherings of the faithful from different parts of the world, who come to Medjugorje, prompted both by motives of belief and various other motives, require the attention and pastoral care in the first place of the diocesan bishop and with him of the other bishops also, so that in Medjugorje and in everything connected with it a healthy devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary may be promoted in accordance with the teaching of the Church.
For this purpose, the bishops will issue especially suitable liturgical-pastoral directives. Likewise, through their Commission they will continue to keep up with and investigate the entire event in Medjugorje.
In Zadar April 10, 1991
The Bishops of Yugoslavia
Are pilgrimages to Medjugorje permitted or not???
This is one of the most discussed topics on the subject of Medjugorje: Pilgrimages.
Keep in mind as you read this, that the 1978 CDF document on apparition discernment used by bishops says (emphasis mine in bold):
b) Then, if this examination appears favorable, to allow certain public demonstrations of cult and devotion, while continuing to investigate the facts with extreme prudence(which is equivalent to the formula: “for the moment, nothing is opposed to it”).
With that in mind, you may notice two common threads in each of these communications out of the Bishop's conference and the Vatican.
On June 24, 1981, the Feast of St. John the Baptist, the village was thrown into turmoil by an extraordinary happening. Two teenagers from Bijakovici were walking along a path by Podbrdo hill when they saw the shining silhouette of a young woman holding a baby in her arms. She covered and uncovered the child as if to reveal Him to the children.
One of them, Ivanka Ivankovic, 16, looked up in astonishment and stared at the light. She exclaimed to her friend Mirjana, “Look, it’s Gospa!” (Gospa in Croatian means “Our Lady”.) Mirjana, sure that Ivanka was joking, did not even take the time to look in that direction. “C’mon!” She said, mocking her. “Do you really think I would believe that Gospa is appearing to us?” When Mirjana finally resolved to look up, she saw the Lady too and fell to her knees speechless. Their friend, Vicka Ivankovic, was passing by. “Look up there, Vicka! Our Lady is there! Look how beautiful she is!” They called to her. Vicka made fun of them without glancing toward the hill and ran away. When she met Ivan Dragicevic, 16, in the street she recounted to him the words of Mirjana and Ivanka. Then she said, “Let’s go together and see what is happening!” When they arrived at the foot of the hill, they too saw the silhouette of the Lady. Ivan, frightened, fled to his home at full speed leaving his shoes behind.
Our Lady appears to six visionaries, which can see her and talk with her during regular apparitions. During some of these apparitions, Our Lady gives messages. One of most frequented topics of these messages are appeals for prayers and love.
On June 24, 1981 at around 6pm six little children went outside of Medjugorje on a little hill named Podbrdo, or locally known as Crnica.
Those children were Ivanka Ivanković, Mirjana Dragičević, Vicka Ivanković, Ivan
Dragičević, Ivan Ivanković and Milka Pavlović. While there, they saw a beautiful, young woman holding a baby in her arms. She never said anything that day, but tried to show them with her hands to come closer to her. The children got very scared and ran away, although they all thought they saw Virgin Mary.
Supernatural signs are a method God has used throughout history to know Him and to bring His children to conversion. It is a way God speaks to us or to incite our hearts to believe and come to Him. Yet, Jesus once said:
“An evil and unfaithful generation seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it except the sign of Jonah the prophet.”
Yet still, Our Lady says:
March 25, 1990
“…God wants to save you and sends you messages through men, nature, and so many things which can only help you to understand that you must change the direction of your life…”