As you can tell from a document I wrote many years ago, "Are They Priests" the promoters of false apparitions are so anxious to get priests involved that the take no care to see if they are really priests or not. The apparition circuit is so lucrative financially that many frauds put on priestly robs, learn the mass, and pass themselves off as priests or bishops. This has happened many times not only in the Medjugorje circuits but right inside Medjugorje itself, as even the expelled Franciscans take little care to check the "celebrate" of the priests and bishops who come and conduct sacraments at Medjugorje. Why should they care, since the sacraments of even a properly ordained priest are illegal anyway, since the local bishop has forbidden them.
A few years ago I learned that the Franciscans were building a large multi-million dollar Basilica with some of the apparition funds. The local ordinary said that they were going to use this as "The Rome of Croatia", but I did not believe this and could not prove it. There were statements to that effect when the Pope came to Bosnia and did not visit Medjugorje, but this was not proof. Then there was the attempt of the district around Medjugorje to separate themselves from the Bosnia- Herzegovina federation set up by the international community to bring about peace after the war, which caused the raid on the bank, set up by the Franciscans and the HLO.
Most recently the expelled Franciscans of Medjugorje conducted a confirmation of some children using an outside archbishop by the name of Novak. We now know they were planing to also use this man to ordain one of the Franciscans, probably Barbaric (now dead), as the bishop of Medjugorje and later as the Pope of a new and separated Church called, the Croatian Catholic Church.
The stupidity of the Franciscans is that they did not even check out this man, who called himself an Archbishop. He is not only not an Archbishop, he is not even a priest. The following is the proof. [the bracket statements are added by me.]
A COMMUNIQUE REGARDING
THE ILLEGITIMATE BISHOP AND THE ILLEGITIMATE CONFIRMATION
From the Chancery Office of the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno
This Chancery Office has already made Communiques on May 16, 19 and 21 of this year that "Bishop Srecko Franjo Novak" upon the invitation of the Franciscan priests who have occupied the parish of Grude: S. Pavlovic, A. Soljic, B. Maric and A. Saravanja - 13 May; then upon the invitation of the dismissed Franciscans who have usurped the parish of Capljina: Bonifacije Barbaric, B. Rados and M. Vlasic - 20 May and finally upon the invitation of Fra Martin Planinic, who has seized the parish of Tepcici 27 May 2001, conducted the rite of "confirmation".
According to his Certificate of Baptism, Novak is the son of parents who were not married in the Church and only legitimate p.f.c. (= pro foro civili). Yet he was baptized in the Catholic Church (enclosure N. 1 - photocopy of the Certificate of Baptism of 1968 &2001).
Having been expelled from the Catholic seminary, he joined the Old Catholics. [Old Catholics are a heretical sect that left the Catholic Church at the time of the First Vatican Council] The Sacrament of Holy Order has three levels: Diaconate, Presbyterate and Episcopate. To this day, Novak has not provided any documented proof of his ordination to the priesthood or episcopacy. He has stated: "I possess all documents regarding my High School diploma. my scientific title and proof of completion of theological studies as well as my episcopal ordination in Switzerland in 1989." (Slobodna Dalmacija, 23.5.2001, p. 9). He is hence obliged to prove: who ordained him a priest and bishop? When and where? Who can testify to these events? Where are the originals of the diploma of ordination (testimonium ordinis)? Where can this be verified? The people have a right to know the origins of public figures. The position of the Chancery Office of the Diocese of Mostar regarding the documents received of Srecko Franjo Novak are the following:
"Novak studied theology at the Old Catholic theological faculty in Bern. He was ordained deacon by bishop Leon Gauthier. Ordination to the priesthood was denied to him. From that time onward; he has had nothing to do with the Christian-Catholic church nor with any other Old Catholic church of the Union of Utrecht. He never received episcopal consecration according to the rile of the Old Catholic church" (enclosure N. 2: photocopy of Gemy's letter; enclosure N. 3: photocopy of the Old Catholic Dr. Ivo Hrsak's letter from Zagreb, 23 May 2001).
2) Self-proclaimed bishop and even archbishop! We have managed to obtain a copy of the "List of succession" which Novak refers to in speaking to journalists (Slobodna Dalmacija, 23 May 200 I, p. 9). In fact, it is the "List of successors of the International Christian community" (Christengemeinde International - die Successorenliste). This "List of succession" has not been presented to the public by Novak because being a false document it does not give him honor. This document begins by listing the names of ten successors of the Canadian community, the current bishop being: "Serge Theriault, from Hull, Canada". A new title then follows: A list of succession of the International Christian community, and one can see the first name as Leon, 2 May 1983 and then a double cross (indicating an archbishop) with the signature: Leon Felix (Srecko) Novak. Under his name there are listed six more Gennan and Croatian names of "archbishops" and "bishops" with their signatures, which Leon Felix Srecko Franjo Novak, the self-proclaimed "archbishop", "ordained" himself or together with those he "ordained" earlier (enclosure N. 4: copy of the "List of succession" of "archbishop" Novak).
This "List" only proves Novak's religious megalomania. During his seminary days he was known to dress up in a priest's cassock and march through the streets of Zagreb! Many of his superiors and colleagues who are priests today can testify to this.
3) Questions to Theriault and his responses. Having obtained the "List of succession", for the love of Truth and with all ecumenical respect, we sent forth 10 questions via e-mail on 24 May to Serge Theriault regarding S. F. Novak. Amongst the inquiries: Was Novak ever regularly ordained by someone with "apostolic succession "? Who ordained him as bishop? Someone has said that you personally ordained him bishop? If this is true, when and where did this take place? (enclosure N. 5: copy of e-mail with Croatian translation).
Serge Theriault wrote back the same day he received the letter on 24 May 2001 and responded: "I did not ordain him a deacon, priest or bishop... " (enclosure N. 6: copy of Theriault's letter with a Croatian translation of Questions and Answers).
From the response one can understand that up until May of 1983 Novak was not even a deacon, yet'" the "List of succession" 2 May 1983 his signature appears as "archbishop" Leon!
4) "Theriault's solemn Declaration. The next day, 25 May 2001, we sent Serge Theriault a copy of the "List of succession", according to which he "ordained" Novak a "bishop". Theriault was so upset that he immediately called a meeting of the Synod Council and the same day 25 May issued a resolute "Statement regarding Srecko Novak...". As the "4th Bishop Ordinary of the Christian Catholic Rite of Community Churches" he declares "that Srecko Novak, Harald Scheffler. Franz Budweiser and others are not, and never have been, canonical clergymen in our jurisdiction, and that they have ordination to the diaconate. the priesthood or the episcopate in the historical Apostolic Succession has been conferred on them by me or by my predecessor, Msgr. 0 'Neill M Cote, 1939-1986... and in consequence, it is falsehood that an Episcopal Lineage in Apostolic Succession is claimed from and through us, as stated in the attached document titled Die Successorenliste of the Christengemeinde International" (enclosure N. 7: copy of the Declaration in English with a Croatian translation).
5) "Professor and doctor of Theology"? Srecko Novak, together with Dragan Hazier, from the "Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts in Diaspora" in Basel, issued an honoris causa doctorate diploma with his signature as secretarius with a little cross (indicating that he is a bishop) with the following: "Prof Dr. th. + Srecko Nuvak", thus suggesting that he is a Doctor of Theology. This is how he signed the diploma given to Hans Joachim Dombrowsky on 7 March 1994 (enclosure N. 8: photocopy of the diploma). If it is true that he is a "professor and doctor theology" as his signature indicates, then he should at least provide his diploma or any other authentic document of a theological faculty indicating: where, when and from whom did he receive his doctorate in theology. If this is not true, then one knows what this is called in academic circles. What is known is that he was expelled from the seminary of Zagreb as well as from the Old Catholic theological school before he completed the first level of studies towards a diploma in theology.
Such are the facts of the matter regarding Novak as a pseudo-professor, deceptive-doctor of theology, phony-priest, bogus-bishop and spurious "successor of the apostles" -all this documented with his signature. From his signatures and the documents which others have received from him, we are convinced that we are dealing with not only a dismissed Catholic seminarian, an expelled Old Catholic deacon, but also with a scientific and ecclesiastical falsifier, who the above-mentioned dismissed and disobedient Franciscans of the Province of Herzegovina have promoted to be their "bishop"! These sad events probably best describe how deep the disease of disobedience can go in the Church and concretely in the entire "Herzegovinian affair"!
According to the documents which we have obtained and Novak's statements, we hereby declare that all Novak's masses are invalid and sacrilegious since he has no proof that he was validly ordained a priest, and that all his confirmations are also invalid and sacrilegious since he has no proof that he was validly ordained a bishop!
Conclusion. All of this can be summarized in a single word: TRAGEDY! This is a religious, moral, liturgical, sacramental, dogmatic, catholic, "ecumenical" and especially a Franciscan tragedy!
We appreciate the Communique given by the Provincialate of the Franciscan Province of Herzegovina of 23 May, in which the Province finally distances itself: "from the actions of certain Franciscans who are already under sanctions by the Generalate of the Franciscan Order and by the local Ordinary. Neither the Franciscans of Herzegovina nor the Franciscan Providence of Herzegovina, which is truly Catholic, do not stand by these actions..." (enclosure N. 9. copy of the Statement). It is scandalous how some disobedient Franciscans have strayed from the principles, hierarchy and order of the Catholic Church deceiving hundreds of candidates for confirmation, thousands of sponsors and parents and giving way to offence and sacrilege against the Holy Spirit. It is evident here that the use of reason has failed and moral idiocy has taken over.
[The reason for bringing in this so-called archbishop of a heretical sect was to ordain one of the dismissed Franciscan's as a bishop and later as a Pope.]
"If Gypsies can have their own bishop... then why can't a Franciscan be consecrated bishop?" Fra Bernard Maric asks (Junarnji list. 19 May 2001, p. 3). Is this the way to resolve the "Herzegovinian affair"?
Is this then an attempt to separate from the Catholic Church through a validly ordained bishop who would not recognize the Holy See?
Would such a disobedient or dismissed Franciscan be ordained a "bishop" by the dismissed Old Catholic deacon Srecko Novak, so then that "the last fraud will be worse than the first" (Mt. 27:64)?
We humbly pray that the Holy Trinity may keep us, guide us and consecrate us in our holy faith and our faithfulness to the Catholic Church.
Mostar, 28 May 2001. Msgr. Luka Pavlovic
OF THE BISHOP'S CONFERENCE OF BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA
We the Bishops of Bosnia-Herzegovina, motivated by our responsibility to maintain unity in the Church and by our pastoral care for the good of souls, having gathered together for a special session in Mostar, wish to communicate to the Catholic faithful and the general public the following:
The appearance of a member of a non-catholic community who recently held the rite of confirmation in three parishes of the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, is an overt attempt to disintegrate the unity of the Roman Catholic Church in this country and to break its centuries-old bond of communion with the Apostolic See of St. Peter.
The priests dismissed from the Franciscan Order, as well as those who in disobedience to their religious and Church superiors, who invited a non-Catholic to preside at a catholic rite, are directly acting against the holiness of the sacraments and the unity of the Church.
Those candidates who for whatever reason agreed to participate in these scandalous acts, through which Catholic Church unity is not strengthened but destroyed, did not receive the sacrament of Confirmation of the Catholic Church.
It seems that the aim and the method in which the above-mentioned rite was conducted serve only to increase the difficulties which the Croatian people and the Catholic Church in Bosnia and Herzegovina have been exposed to recently.
Therefore we wholeheartedly implore the Catholics of B-H, the priests, religious and all the faithful, especially those in the Diocese of Mostar-Duvno, to not allow anyone to deceive or confuse them in the solid faith of their fathers, in their faithfulness to the Holy Father and the Holy See, as well as their unity with the local bishops. We invite everyone to pray to our heavenly Father and to Christ the Good Shepherd, so that all the faithful of the holy Church may receive the gift of the Holy Spirit who is the only guarantee of the Church's unity of faith and her communion of love and peace. Through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church, we pray that all may receive an abundance of blessings and peace of the Holy Trinity!
Mostar. 29 May 2001.
Vinko Cardinal Puljic, Archbishop of Vrhbosna (Sarajevo)
Franjo Komarica, Bishop of Banja Luka
Ratko Peric, Bishop of Mostar-Duvno
Pero Sudar, Auxiliary Bishop of Vrhbosna (Sarajevo)
THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY
Medjugorje, July 1,2000
Dear candidates for Confirmation and God-loving faithful:
Yesterday we celebrated the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in various places in our two Dioceses. Today the Church celebrates the liturgical memory of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This celebration used to fall on the 22nd of August. I recall with gratitude to God, that I chose to celebrate my First Mass on that day in 1969).
For many years now this memory is celebrated the day after the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart" one after the other, and rightfully so. Today's memory moves us to say a few words on the Blessed Virgin Mary, who was filled with the Holy Spirit and to especially refer to her motherly heart. Holy Scripture twice mentions Mary's motherly heart:
1. After the events regarding Jesus' birth, Saint Luke writes: "Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart" (Lk. 2:19).
2. After the encounter in the temple, when Jesus was 12 years old, Saint Luke writes once again: "his mother kept all these things in her heart" (Lk. 2:51).
This is truly a simple, motherly and humane reaction! She kept all these events with gratitude inside her and reflected upon them with love in her motherly heart. In both, the first and second, occasions, not only words are mentioned which Mary
heard, since the Greek original rhemata means words, news, teaching. events, memories. The Madonna pondered upon these events in her heart, just as one ponders upon the glorious mysteries of the rosary)', keeps them as a great treasure,
thanks God and prays to Him that she may thoughtfully unite them in her mind and heart. Mary surely spoke of these events to Jesus when he grew up. She also could have heard directly from him and experienced during his and her lifetime, the full meaning of these memories and events.
The Gospels contain a few moments where Mary speaks up, asks questions and says a prayer. For instance, the Gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark do not contain any of Mary's direct words. In the Gospels of St. Luke and St. John, there are a few, five or six of her direct interventions.
I. In Nazareth she asked the archangel Gabriel: "How can this be, since I have no husband?" (Lk. I :34). And when the angel explained in his own way how this will come about., then she
2. accepted and said: "Let it be to me according to your word" (Lk 1 :38). This word of the Madonna, we Catholics say at least once if not three times a day, when we pray the Angelus.
3. The Magnificat is her prayer of praise and thanksgiving, which follows the Old Testament way of the Samuel's mother Anne, arranged in ten lines; "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior ... and his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation..." (Lk. I :46-56). This prayer of praise we priests, religious and sisters pray or sing each evening during the liturgy of the hours. Then come two words which Mary puts to Jesus:
4. When he was 12 years old, while at the temple, when they found him, she said: "Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been looking for you anxiously" (Lk. 2:48), which we heard in today's gospel reading.
5. and at the beginning of Jesus' public ministry, at Cana of Galilee, during a wedding banquet: "They have no wine" (Jn. 2:3). Right after this
6. she said to the servants: "Do whatever he tells you." (In 2:5). There could be other similar occasions in the future.
Regarding these few lines where Mary directly asks, speaks or prays something, and other moments when she listens to others and in which she is described as Virgin and Mother, tons of theological books have been written, innumerous Marian conferences have been held and many Masters' and Doctoral theses on Mariology have been defended. These biblical words are the foundation of our faith and relationship to Mary as Mother of Jesus and exemplary believer in God. She is an example and guide in this faith. We especially appreciate Mary's words that God's mercy is on those who fear him, on those who have a sense of fear of God and his commandments. Dear candidates for Confirmation, remember to pray to Mary and always for the gift of fear of God which comes from the Holy Spirit!
When one keeps this in mind, and arrives at a biblical knowledge of Mary as the humble and silent Virgin, as a worried and prudent Mother, who ponders upon all these events in her heart and speaks very little of it, then a true believer can only remain amazed at the talk that here in Medjugorje, for almost twenty years now, day by day, Mary has been presumably "appearing" for five, ten or fifteen minutes to so-called "seers"; that she is presumably handing something over: in the from of so-called "messages", or "ten secrets", it's not sure if there are exactly ten, if each person has received the same number, or if there are six times more, meaning that each person received a different amount.
Does this mean that this "apparition" up until this time has appeared 6,940 times (19 years multiplied by 365/6 days)? And that constantly, every day, she is speaking, and that only once in a month she leaves a "message", and thanks the so-called "seers" for responding to her call? And this has been going on for about twenty years now, and could keep on going another ten, twenty or even more years?
The official statements of the Church starting from the local Bishop up to the Bishops' Conference has not in this case recognized a single "apparition" as authentic. The Church has clearly declared that it is impossible to affirm that these events involve supernatural apparitions. For this reason I wrote decisively and clearly on 14 February 1998 to the local pastor:
"Therefore, let no official church premises belonging to the parish be used for these so-called, presumed and imagined "apparitions" which have never been recognized nor accepted by the Catholic Church". The parish priest willingly obeyed.
Therefore I hereby declare with no doubt in my mind. as the local Ordinary and Bishop, that not a single so-called "apparition" nor so-called "message" convinces me that these events involve supernatural appearances. Messages on peace and grace, regarding fasting and prayer, on love and the need for penance are already known at the most official levels of the Bible teachings and those of the Church.
And what are we to do with the acclaimed "spiritual fruits"? Dear believers, in whichever church you enter in order to pray to God with faith. sincerely confess and repent for your sins, and piously receive Holy Communion, you may receive spiritual fruits. Candidates for Confirmation receive the sevenfold gift of the Holy Spirit, not because they are in Medjugorje, or Mostar or Rome, but because it is conferred upon them by an authorized minister of the Church. No one in the right mind who believes in God would every say that in those parishes around the world where the sacraments are celebrated and received legitimately, there will be no spiritual fruits. Wherever the Holy Spirit is found there will be spiritual fruits as well!
The Catholic Church in her mission of teaching and upholding the truth of salvation, is not influenced by large or small numbers of peoples or nations present. She holds instead, to that which God has revealed about himself on mankind, and on Mary of whom we believe and hold that
All of us, you candidates for Confirmation and the rest of us, should pray to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of Jesus and our spiritual mother, that through the love of her Immaculate Heart she intercede for us before the Father, that through her motherly care, she watch over us, over this parish, our Diocese and the entire world.
+ Ratko Peric.