Mirjana's discourse with questions and answers to pilgrims
In her talk to us, Mirjana began by recounting the early days of the apparitions. She did this primarily for those who had never been to Medjugorje before. Any words in italics are mine. The first part of the overview is presented here. Mirjana's words were translated by Miki Musa and therefore are not always grammatically correct but you will get the idea.
Part 3 - Questions and Answers
Mirjana: Now you can ask whatever you may be interested in.
Q: I’ve looked at some of the videos of your monthly apparitions and sometimes you look as if you are straining to hear Our Lady. Is it that she speaks very quietly or that she is saying something difficult and you really have to listen?
A: To be honest, I never watch any of the videos from apparitions because it’s a little painful for me because I know that was the moment when I was able to see her and now I don’t. So I never watch these videos but this question that you ask; I always knew from the beginning that I can hear her with my ears and see her with my eyes. But we had so many commissions that were investigating the apparitions in Medjugorje and they were not so modernised in the beginning. They would pinch us with the needles in our arms during the apparition. Only after the apparition we were able to see some blood on our shirts. But the latest one that I was investigated by were of Insbruck from Austria who are from an Institute for the supernatural happenings. You see we are supernatural (laughter). They put these devices all over me, my ears, my eyes, my brain, my pressure, everything. They hypnotised me, under hypnosis they brought me back to an apparition and as I was under hypnosis, they put me on a lie detector, as CSI New York ! (laughter). That was SO much fun !! It all took about 2 days. To make a long story short, their conclusion was that before my eyes, I have something supernatural and beautiful, that I can hear with my ears and see with my eyes. But they cannot say whether I see Our Lady, Jesus or Angels. It is something beautiful and supernatural because the way my body was reacting, a normal body would not be able to react like that and still be alive. Why do I do this ? (gestures to lean forwards), I don’t know. Sometimes I think I don’t hear too well.
Q: Does the Blessed Mother talk to you? Can you ask her questions? Does she respond, do you converse back and forth?
A: Our conversation is always led by her. I feel within myself what I may or may not ask her. She doesn’t have to be the one to tell me that’s not a question to ask me. I just feel it within myself. I usually ask for really serious cases, like the sick people in the families and I get the answer. But at the same time, those people who were present at the apparition who asked with their own heart, with an open heart, they also get the answer, but not through me, because we are all the same before Our Lady. I’ll give you 2 examples.
A girl during the apparition was kneeling next to me and she was really crying so painfully during the prayer, and she cried even after the apparition. I didn’t know who she was or why was she crying. After the apparition, as always, I write the message and then I left. And after about a month, they told me that girl had cancer with metastases all over her body but after she went back from Medjugorje for the analysis, everything was gone. So it was her, herself who was asking Our Lady. I didn’t even know what was going on with her.
At the same time, a young priest knocked on the door of my home after an apparition. He said “ I came to see what was happening. What did you talk to me after the apparition ? You were telling me something but I did not understand it because I’m Italian.” I was looking at him very strange way . I don’t speak with anybody after the apparition. I just write the message because I have such an intensive pain within myself , I’m just yearning for my own room for silence of prayer.
I said “It wasn’t me” He looked at me for a few seconds and then he turned and started leaving, departing in tears. I said “Father, what has happened, may I help you?”. He said “No, I understand everything now. The one who was talking to me was our Heavenly Mother and she said to me.. Convert my son”.
Q: We are all on a spiritual journey but you have had your spiritual journey guided by Our Lady. Along the way, was there anything that sticks out to you, that she corrected or any mistakes that you made or things that she said, ‘no don’t do this this way, do it that way’?
A: I have to correct you immediately (laughter).
Our Lady is my spiritual guide and she is your spiritual guide as well in the same way. She doesn’t tell me not even a word more than I share with you. I also have to pray in order to understand the message. And same as you do, I have a need for a priest. I need a priest as well, to help me understand and lead me. There are no privileged ones for Our Lady.
Q: When I’m talking to people who don’t believe in Medjugorje, I’ll sometimes mention the secrets to them and tell them that there will be 10 things that will happen that are going to be announced ahead of time. So that when they start to hear that, listen and when the first one happens, maybe they’ll start to believe. I keep telling them that 10 will be announced. Will 10 be announced and what are you allowed to tell us about the secrets?
A: Everything I was allowed to say about the secrets, I’ve already said. But Our Lady doesn’t want us to be fearful, to be afraid, because the true faith does not come from fear. The true faith comes from the heart. But I never said to anybody whether the secrets are good or bad. If Our Lady says her heart will triumph, then what should we be afraid of?
Q: First of all can I speak on behalf of everybody. We want to thank you for having us here. I was next to you (during the apparition), my son was killed in Afghanistan and I just want to say that I came here looking for peace, and I found it. Thank you. (At this point, this lady, and everyone in the room became very emotional, including Mirjana and Miki).
A: Mirjana replied in English “ Don’t talk to me like that, in this way (meaning: don’t say those things to me) at which there was weak laughter in the room and then Mirjana continued (while wiping tears from her eyes), I thank you all because you are such a wonderful pilgrims and ever since you came here, I’ve been praying for you so that God may help you to understand why you have come here and to help you find peace. And I am asking from you to pray for us to be able to do everything that Our Lady desires from us, in the correct way,
Q: When Mary goes back up, can you see heaven ?
A: No I can’t. I hope I will see heaven one day (laughter). How old are you? (the boy responds that he is 12). See, when the apparitions started, Jakov was only nine and a half and as we were taken by the police every single day, one particular morning, only Jakov and Vicka succeeded to hide. Jakov was about 10. So when Our Lady appeared, she came only to 2 of them. And she said “Now I will take you with me”. They thought that were dying because they go with Our Lady (laughter) and Jakov said, “Our Lady, take Vicka, she has 7 brothers and sisters and I am the only one in my family” (laugher). Our Lady just smiled back and said “No, I just desire to show you that heaven, purgatory and hell do exist”. So only 2 of them were able to see that. Jakov is 36 years old and he’s not any braver at all! (laughter) We find ourselves on a sinking ground, but nothing ever happened, not even these old houses, not even a stone was moved, so its not dangerous at all but no one can explain that to Jakov (laughter). On one occaision, when we had a little earthquake, he started running out of the house and his wife Annalisa said ”Jakov, what about our children?” He said “ As long as I live, there will be children” (laughter). (Then Mirjana whispers under her breath… his wife, his children !!!)
And the latest group of Americans that were staying here, as they were walking along his yard, they said “Jakov, what’s the name of your puppy?” He said Puppy’s name is Mirjana and they believed him !! They came to my home and said, “ Mirjana, did you name your puppy Jakov ?” I said no, I love my puppy too much !!(laughter)
Q: You stress the importance of the rosary in the family. I would like to know if you can give us an example of how you pray the rosary with your own children.
A: Mostly in the evening, when everything calms down a little bit we always say one rosary together. Somehow its so beautiful, with love. Normal ! (laughter). I don’t know what other word to use because since they were born they were praying with us. Of course, as infants they did not pray but they were present. And so as they grew up that was something so normal for them. For example, the older daughter, Maria, she always accepted that with the heart. And there’s another example. You know as a parish we climb the apparition hill on every Sunday. Our late Fr Slavko who passed away on the cross hill, was leading the rosary. Me, Marko and Maria who was only 3 years old, we climbed the hill. And Fr Slavko is my husband’s uncle. Just out of joke you know, he gave the microphone to Maria and said “will you pray?”. Only 3 years old, Maria she said “ do you want me to lead the prayer in Croatian or Italian?”(laughter). He said “it’s the same you know, doesn’t matter, just pray “ (laughter) because she surprised him.
And it was a little harder with the younger one, Veronica. She was always trying to find some excuses. I think that sounds familiar to you with your kids. “ I have to go to the toilet, I’m hungry, I’m thirsty. You just go on and pray, I’ll be back”. And always with a smile we would say to her, “no problem, you go on, we will wait for you” (laughter). But when she was about 6 or 7, she was the one who would ask from us to pray. So, thanks be to God, we succeeded so far to make it that way up to now. (Mirjana then repeats in English, “up to now”. (laughter) What I can do now, I can place them in Our Lady’s hands and I can pray for them.
Q: During the apparition, does the Blessed Mother appear to you happy or sad?
A: It depends. Its not always the same. It depends on the message that she gives us or depends on what she is talking about. If it is something sad that she’s talking about then she is sad. If she talks about Jesus, or God’s love then she always has a smile on her face. Same like we people, depends. I always say to Italians, but she’s not like you. (Mirjana waves her arms about) (laughter). But now a miracle happened. I have to say that. I’m still like shocked, I can’t believe it. Italians are a nation that has a temperament you know, and they seem glad to physically to show you their emotions. They have to simply hug you, kiss you. During the mass in the church they were cutting my hair as well. I will never pass by Italians without being hugged, kissed or having bruises after you know (points to her arms). Saturday morning at 9am, I was talking to about 4,000 Italians and after the talk, I just walked to the car in such a normal way ! They just said to me “Thank you”. And same during and after the mass yesterday. Just “thank you”. I was shocked (holds hands up laughing). I still don’t understand ! For me that is really a great miracle ! Maybe you can understand that but I repeat saying this to everybody.
Q: How does Our Lady appear? Does she look young or old?
A: Personally, I would give her age between 20-25 and she didn’t age at all in these years (laughter). She’s always the same.
Q: Did Our Lady mention specifically the scandal in the priesthood?
A: No, just to pray, to fast and to love our priests and that God will judge every individual priest the way he was as a priest and we should not take in our hands what belongs to God.
Q: When are you all going to meet again, when and where?
A: Before the apparitions, visionaries were not friends, some of us didn’t even know each other. Our Lady is the one who put us together. Even today, everyone of us has our own friends. We meet only when we have to discuss about the missions that we have. But for me, I’m friends only with Jakov, who lives across the road. We meet for about 10 minutes each day and I’m getting a little tired of him ! (laughter).
I don’t know if you know Ivan but when he comes to visit me, he talks to me as with a pilgrim. He’s preaching to me ! Then I allow him about 10 minutes and I say “Ivan, I am a visionary as well” ! He is a little serious ! We meet only if we have something to talk about our missions. Another beautiful occasion happened with Fr Slavko. For about a year he was trying to gather all six visionaries with him to meet. He didn’t make it. He came one day to my home very angry. I said “what happened?”. He said “ How can you ask me something like that ? Because if I were Our Lady I would never ever chose 6 of you. Only she could do that. And for me the sign that she really is here is the fact that she chose 6 of you” and I said “thank you Fr Slavko” !
Q: Your message that you get on the 2nd of the month, that’s for the world ? (Mirjana nods), The individual messages that are still being given daily, are those also for the world or one person ?
A: I think that the daily things that Our Lady is speaking with those having daily apparitions is like preparation for those visionaries for what is going to happen, because some of them didn’t receive the 10th secret yet.
There was a journalist from New York, he made an interview with me and he was a very interesting person so we were joking and he said to me “ how come that you received all those 10 secrets so fast, so soon, and the others did not ? And I was joking and I said to him “Our Lady is immediately realising who is smart enough to understand soon and who needs time “ And we were laughing to this but that’s exactly how he wrote it ! (laughter). Then Ivan in America read that and he didn’t speak with me for several days but he survived (laughter). But that’s what Our Lady desires from us, to joke as well because what kind of example will you give to those who did not come to know the love of God yet, if you are always worried, angry, sad. And the ones who did not come to know the love of God yet will say, you are not any different from me. And we are those who are supposed to give a smile and love because Our Lady is asking from us to be recognised for that.
Q: Are all the secrets the same? The same to each of you?
A: We never talk about the secrets with each other because secrets are secrets and we women are capable to keep the secrets (laughter and applause). A friend of me and my husband says to my husband “ My wife is keeping something in secret to me “. Marko looked at him and says “ what would you do if you were me, (laughter) she already has 10 and who know how many more “! (laughter),
Q: During one of the visions I understand that you asked if you should all become nuns/priests ?
A: As a children we asked her, what does she desire from our lives? And this is what she said; “If you feel within your heart that you are called to become priests or nuns, I desire it to be visible that I was with you. But if you desire to have your families, then I desire that you do your best to make your family to be an example to other families. That’s all she ever said about our personal life.
Q: Does she always war the same outfit ? The same colours ? ( laughter)
A: You are such a good example to the unbelievers (laughter). Is your origin Italian ? That’s typical Italian question. They ask you what fabric its made of. Our Lady always has grey dress and white veil except on Christmas and Easter when her dress gets a kind of golden colour. When I say grey and golden, these are most alike to our grey and golden colours. They are not our grey and golden colour.
Questioner responds: Now I still don’t know what kind of outfit to buy ! (laughter). Mirjana replies: but I helped you a little bit, right ? (laughter).
Q: From what time to what time do you fast?
A: This is typical American question (laughter). As if I am allowed to make Wednesday and Friday, sure !. We all know how long Wednesday lasts, same like Friday.
Q: I’ve heard that the Bishop here is not completely supportive of what goes on here. Do you have any comments about that for us?
A: Our Bishop first of all is our Bishop. We pray for him and we respect him because that is the way our Heavenly Mother has been teaching us. He never talked with us visionaries and that’s simply why I cannot comment or make any comments about him. What I can say is that we have a letter from Vatican that whatever our Bishop says about Medjugorje is going to be accepted in Vatican as his own personal opinion, but not opinion as a Bishop because Medjugorje surpasses this Diocese I would say and it’s been brought into hands of Vatican, because it’s a world phenomenon. So now we are in hands of Vatican.
I personally had a such a great honour to be able to speak with late Pope John Paul II. That was so beautiful. I was in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome with all other pilgrims. Pope as he was walking by, he was blessing everybody. He blessed me and just walked away. And then this Italian priest I was with said “Holy Father, this is Mirjana from Medjugorje”. He came back, blessed me again and he left. And I said to this priest “ Father, you see he just thinks that I need a double blessing “ (laughter). However, in the afternoon we received an invitation tomorrow morning to come to Castelgondolfo, close to Rome in order to talk to Holy Father. I don’t have to tell you that I couldn’t sleep all night (smiles) Tomorrow when I reached the place, he saw that I was so excited. We were alone and then he started talking to me in Polish. He thought I would understand because both are Slavic languages. He wanted to make me feel comfortable but I didn’t understand a word because its not even close to our language. However, I was crying and I couldn’t catch a breath to say a word. So when I finally succeeded to say a word, I said “ Holy Father, can we try in Italian ?”. (laughter). Then we talked and among other things he said to me, “If I were not Pope, I would be in Medjugorje a long time ago. I know everything, I have been following everything. Ask pilgrims to pray for my intentions. And take good care of Medjugorje because Medjugorje is the hope for the entire world……
Q: I have so many questions but I can’t think straight. So when I leave I leave can you pray for me that I can feel and hear an answer to my questions?
A: You came on Tuesday. Since Tuesday I have been praying for you. That’s what I was intending to ask from all of you. Pray for me and I will pray for you because there is a reason why you have come here. Our Lady put us together and we have to stay together in prayer.
Q: Is Mirjana ever worried about her safety?
A: I’m in God’s hands. Its impossible to be sure in anything. Definitely I don’t want bodyguards but my life is in God’s hands, and what he desires, what his will is, that will happen. I don’t think of that. Same when I pray, I never specify I pray for my daughters this, for my daughters that. I always say, my dear God, we are in your hands and it is you who knows what is best for us, and we place ourselves in your hands. There were some bad cases as well but God helped. He helped me so that I passed more or less unharmed (smile) because not everyone who comes to Medjugorje is healthy. There were some cases but God provided.
Q: How long do you think that you are going to be able to do this where you can talk individually with all the pilgrims ?
A: As long as God’s will. Because I pray, I’m trying to understand everything through prayer. Before this conversation, this talk to you, I also prayed to God to help me so that my words would not be empty. Because when your words are empty, then you do the contrary, the opposite. But when you pray then it is Jesus who speaks to you. I’m sorry that Jesus did not help me to describe the colours to you (laughter) but Jesus is a man also !! The Italians will be jealous and will say, how come Americans know everything about fabric !
Q: Should I keep praying alone because sometimes it bothers the rest of the family. I pray the rosary alone many times because the rest of the family wouldn’t like to pray with me.
A: That is a question asked very often. I can tell you only what I personally think, the way I understood that through Our Lady’s messages. For example in your family lets say, you pray and your husband and children do not pray, that’s only an example. Just hide yourself to a quiet place where you will be alone and pray. Pray for them, place them in Our Lady’s hands and be not afraid. Do not preach to them, do not criticise them, do not force them. Just love them, pray for them and put them in Our Lady’s hands and be not afraid. Our Lady will do the rest. Because we must not be an obstacle in our prayer to other people, because in that way, we’ll just do the opposite. That is what I would do if I were you.
Q: Does Our Lady say anything about radical Islam because its getting very scary out there?
A: No, radical Islam is not so dangerous but we are too weak. Let me give you an example. When I was talking with Italians on Saturday, the question was: there are so many muslims who come to Italy now and they change everything. We are not allowed anymore to have crosses in our hospitals, in our schools. I immediately stopped that gentleman and I said “ who is taking that cross off the wall, you or that muslim?”. He said “ I…but…”. I said there is no but, there is no excuse. We are weak. We are weak in our faith and then everyone else is allowed to do whatever they want. If Jesus is the one who teach me to open the door to everybody, I have to do it. The same Jesus teaches me to open you the door and if that Jesus is an obstacle to you, to whom I open the door, then go back home. That is what I think. We always put the guilt on to someone else but we never start with ourselves. What am I like? What do I do for God? How much is my faith strong, how much am I ready to do for my faith?
So its easiest to say they’re radical, they’re this, they’re that. With my God I can do anything. I lived in Sarajevo and the most of the people are muslims, very few orthodox. But we had cross and Our Lady in our home. Those people were coming to our home, they were asking and I would explain to them what that is all about. But no matter what price I had to pay, I would never ever take that cross or Our Lady off the wall. Because our parents told us as well ; if you have to die for God then you will live forever. But if you say no to God, then you will die forever.
Alas, we ran out of time and there was only time for a group photo before leaving for 10am mass. Father concluded the meeting by giving us all a blessing and praying that we would come to understand the reason for our coming to Medjugorje.
Translated by Miki Musa
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