January 1987: Communique of Yugoslav bishops concerning the facts of Medjugorje


His Eminence Franjo Cardinal Kuharic, President, Bishops’ Conference of Yugoslavia, and Most Rev. Pavao Zanic, Bishop of Mostar


9 January 1987

Printed in

L’Osservatore Romano English edition, 23 February 1987


The text in L’Osservatore gives the date as January 29, 1987. However, in Bp. Zanic’s July 1987 declaration the date of the press release is given as January 9. Fr. Sivric’s The Hidden Side of Medjugorje mentions the same January 9 date.

We publish below the text of a communique published in the Official Bulletin of the Archdiocese of Zagreb, I, 1987, p. 33, signed by His Eminence Cardinal Franjo Kuharic, President of the Yugoslav Episcopal Conference, and H.E. Most Rev. Pavao Zanic, Bishop of Mostar-Duvno, concerning the facts of Medjugorje.  

In conformity with the canonical norms concerning the discernment of alleged apparitions and private revelations, the diocesan commission instituted for that purpose by the Bishop of Mostar, Ordinary of the place, has conducted an inquiry into the events of Medjugorje.

In the course of the investigation it emerged that the events in question went far beyond the diocese in question. Consequently, on the basis of the above-mentioned norms it seemed fitting to continue the investigation on the level of the Episcopal Conference with the institution of a new Commission for that purpose.

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith was informed. It expressed its appreciation for the work carried out by the diocesan commission under the responsibility of the local Ordinary, and it encouraged the continuance of the work at the national episcopal level.

The Episcopal Conference, therefore, is establishing a commission to continue the investigation of the events at Medjugorje. While awaiting the results of the commission’s investigation and the Church’s judgement, pastors and faithful should observe an attitude of prudence customary in such situations. Therefore, it is not permissible to organize pilgrimages and other manifestations motivated by the supernatural character attributed to the events of Medjugorje. Legitimate devotion to Our Lady, recommended by the Church, must conform to the directives of the Magisterium and especially to those contained in the Apostolic Exhortation Marialis Cultus of 2 February 1974 (cf. AAS, 66, 1974, pp. 113-168).

Zagreb, January 29, 1987.

+ Franjo Card. Kuharic
President of the Yugoslav Episcopal Conference

+ Pavao Zanic
Bishop of Mostar