Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Position on Garabandal

Over my years as a blogger, I have been repeatedly asked to my opinion on the apparitions at Garbandal. This is no doubt because of my writings on other questionable apparitions, such as Medjugorje and Bayside.

Garabandal is a quandary for many traditional minded Catholics. It lacks some of the excesses of Medjugorje (forty thousands plus messages, the charismatic stuff) as well as the absurdities of Bayside (T.V. being an invention of the devil, Pope Paul VI being replaced by an "impostor", etc.). In addition, it promotes traditional morality, calls us to penance, promotes Eucharistic devotion, and its timing from 1961 to 1965 coupled with warnings of an imminent chastisement are very convenient to Catholics who see Vatican II as a fundamental rupture with Tradition. Its condemnation of the contemporary generation of bishops - the Conciliar generation - also plays into the hands of Traditionalists.

It is not my intention to enter into a point-by-point critique of Garabandal, but rather to state my personal opinion on the matter. I do not believe the apparitions at Garabandal are legitimate, nor have I ever thought otherwise. Since I am not offering a refutation but merely stating my thoughts, it suffices to say that my gut has always turned me away from this apparition. Something about it does not seem right. I actually suspect the demonic may be involved. Mary's alleged request to not bring any blessed rosaries before her because she wanted to bless them herself has always given me caution. 

There are other reason as well. But, as always, the biggest evidence against their supernatural character is the continued stand by four successive bishops of Santander against the legitimacy of the apparitions (see here). The seers all at one time or another denied the apparitions upon interrogation, and one, Maria Cruz, continues to do so to this day. Some quotes from Maria Cruz from 1984:

"I've never seen the Virgin at the Pines or any celestial being...[Conchita] suddenly went into ecstasy; that sort of comedy scared us and we thought it would end badly. She put into the heads of the three of us that she had seen the angel." [...] (source Spanish; source English)

In 1992 Maria Cruz further reflected on the pressure the seers were under::

"The people tormented us so that we see the angel and the Virgin, and these fanatics came to write a message, as always happened in other apparitions, like Lourdes or Fatima. [...] Every time I have the occasion, although I don’t look for it, I say it, but they don’t want to hear this truth." I remember perfectly how Conchita, who always used to organize jokes, invented everything. She did it without bad intentions, but the situation became so complicated that we had to go on. [...] Do you believe that the Virgin Mary would do such stupid things? [...] But I'm afraid to be in the papers, because then they make life impossible for my other, who still lives in the village, and it is full of fanatics." [Gabriel Carrión López, El lado oscuro de María, Aguaclara, Alicante, 1992, pp. 106-107])

One last thing: According to Garabandal, the Blessed Virgin Mary has promised that she will one day restore the sight of the blind man Joey Lomangino. This is to happen on the same day as the promised "Great Miracle." Joey Lomangino is now 86 years old. If this man dies without having his sight restored to him, then this is absolute evidence of the falsity of these apparitions. The Garbandal people will probably try to wriggle out of it - say that the promise was of spiritual, not physical sight, or perhaps say that he recovered his sight secretly hours before death or something like that. But if we see that sort of mental legerdemain, it will be a pretty clear sign about Garabandal, though perhaps not the sort its enthusiasts were hoping for.

For these reasons, and many more I will not go into here, I do not believe in the authenticity of the Garabandal apparitions nor do I endorse them in any way.


brwno said...

Don't forget that it was promised Father Andreu, an early enthusiast of the apparition who died in Garabandal, would be found incorrupt, which did not happen. The seers then said he would be found incorrupt only after those miraculous events (chastisement etc.) - unitypublishing.com/Apparitions/Garabandal2.html

Anonymous said...

my gut reaction was that it could not be of God, and was creepy. Then I saw Conchita in an interview where she admitted that she was confused and confessed everything but now has decided much later that the apparitions did happen. What bothers me is that Padre Pio allegedly said they were legitimate, and thus we should believe.....

Anonymous said...

I had read in the Garabandal magazine that people used to ask the girls to walk backwards to show them, and that supposedly the girls were reprimanded for pretending when an actual apparition was not happening.....so there is some ambiguity here...but I doubt that Mother Mary would continue to appear to children who were faking and mocking..... if any apparitions were of Mother Mary in the first place, and not demonic

Truthseeker said...

Another extremely lame article on Marian apparitions offering nothing of any substance. One wonders Boniface, why you feel the need to share with everyone your opinions on subjects you clearly know nothing about (Bayside/Garabandal/The principle Movie). Was it perhaps an indirect response to my comment on your original Bayside article (which you so far have failed to respond to directly)? You know, where i challenged your statement that Garabandal was "BUNK" without making a case. So in response you serve us up your best case here? Such powerful arguments against Garabandal and wondrous insights as "Something about it does not seem right" and the ever powerful "my gut has always turned me away from this apparition"

Something you ate perhaps? Out of all the things you swallow easily (documents of VII when it suits your argument for example) we can be certain on one thing you never swallow. That being your enormous pride. As, unsurprisingly you use this Garabandal article to add yet another kicking for your favourite pet hate, Bayside "absurdities of Bayside (T.V. being an invention of the devil etc)".

On that note, and being thoroughly disgusted by your repeated efforts to smear Bayside and ignoring ALL correction, i thought i would attempt (if you don't delete my comment AGAIN that is) to add a little context and clarity to the Bayside messages on the subject of Television.

There were very many quotes on television over the years but i think if i could find one quote that best sums up Heavens view and advise it could be this one "You do not know what your children are watching. Day by day, daily in their lives, the filth and corruption is put into their ears and their sight. The eyes are the mirror of the soul. Guard your children's eyes well. Monitor your sets! Better that you cast them from your household. Remember, My child, out of sight, out of mind. That is why Our statues have been removed from among you and replaced by the edifices of satan. " - Our Lady, October 6, 1974

It is fair to call the TV a modern altar as many have noted that in most homes, gone are the statues and family prayer time. It is the television in centre of the room, all furniture is directed towards it, and so much family time and energy is spent before it. And what does it give back? An almost incessant conveyor belt of sex and violence, swearing, blasphemy and presenting a life and values OPPOSITE to God's plan. It totally kills the spiritual life and TV's have been banned from all decent religious house for decades so deadly it is to the spiritual life. The effects on the mind are also well documented, putting viewers into an addictive alpha state of mindless passive docility within minutes. It is not called programming by accident. We the people are being programmed to accept a stream of spiritual poison, some of which is demonically subtle (subliminal messages for example). It would not be an exaggeration to call TV the No1 instrument of corruption of the youth (young unformed minds being the most pliable to programming). Have you seen Boniface, do you have a clue what the average teenager is exposed to through the TV these days? Just switch MTV on at any time of the day for a fill of 'soft' porn. And don't even get me started on the video games. I could write a book about this subject alone but in summary people have a choice. They can take the good Motherly advice from the Queen of heaven through Bayside and avoid the pitfalls TV brings, and get back to an authentic family prayer life or they can listen to you Boniface, and watch TV, an invention of God so you say. In your desperation to debunk and discredit Bayside will even resort to the moral and theological gymnastics of promoting Television as being from God (quoting VII documents to make your case).

For the average Catholic with a modicum of grace and humility, the truth of the matter is clear when such views are put side by side. Make your choice.........
By their fruit will you know them.

Boniface said...

Dear Truthseeker

I'm not going to respond to your Bayside comments except to say that you're not correct. Bayside does condemn television itself as intrinsically evil and invented by the devil.

Regarding Garabandal, I have offered no 'best case' here - someone asked my opinion on Garabandal and I gave it. I made no attempt at a systematic refutation. I simply gave my opinion, which is different than "making a case."

I did offer one argument - the fact that FOUR BISHOPS have stated there is nothing supernatural at Garabandal and prohibited pilgrimages there for the sake of honoring the apparitions. For me, that's the end of the story. Just like it is for Bayside. Bishops have condemned it? Game over.

Still working on the Bayside article, by the way...I am in the middle of reading the 1980 messages. So, I'm more than half way through.

Truthseeker said...

Oh dear Boniface, you just keep digging your own grave don't you.

First off you say "I'm not going to respond to your Bayside comments except to say that you're not correct"

You then contradict yourself and further respond with "Bayside does condemn television itself as intrinsically evil".

You make a statement that i am wrong but refuse to provide any proof. Your second statement is directly contradicted by the quote i have already provided where the Blessed Mother says if you cannot monitor what you children watch then remove the TV. Clearly, given that advice from the Blessed Mother, TV can NOT be intrinsically evil. So how am i wrong?
You are making VERY public statements about Bayside and making absolute statements that i am wrong but are refusing to substantiate you claims. What does that make you Boniface?

Moving along to Garabandal, you state " I made no attempt at a systematic refutation. I simply gave my opinion".

Wrong. You gave your opinion in one line, and that is all it took. The rest of the article was a systematic refutation of Garabandal. It is just that you arguments against Garabandal are incredibly weak and poorly researched that you don't have the confidence to come right out and say you are attempting to debunk Garabandal. Despite previously labelling Garabandal "BUNK"!!!

You continue with more nonsense by stating "I did offer one argument (against Garabandal)".

No you didn't, you offered multiple arguments against Garabandal.

1. Joey Lomangino has not been cured of blindness.

2. Mary's alleged request to not bring any blessed rosaries before her

(alleged by whom by the way???)

3. The seers all at one time or another denied the apparitions upon interrogation

4. The continued stand by four successive bishops of Santander against the legitimacy of the apparitions

I could go on by Im sure people reading (if you don't delete my response again that is) get my point. That point being that not only do you have very weak and vague reasons for your sneering contempt of Bayside and Garabandal "my gut has always turned me away from this apparition. Something about it does not seem right" but you simply don't even know what you are ACTUALLY saying. You are like a belligerent drunk that obstinately refuses to address his own bad behaviour.

Finally you finish your response by stating about the Bayside messages "I'm more than half way through".

Almost two years after you wrote your first article condemning Bayside and a year and a half after writing a follow up article mocking Bayside devotees you publically admit you are barely half way through actually reading the messages. On what planet Boniface, is it moral and lawful for a man to publically condemn first, then start doing a bit of research (in bad faith) years later?

Boniface said...

Bayside does not simply say the content of TV is bad, it says TV itself is of demonic origin:

"Satan has created the infernal tube." (June 18, 1991)

While television certainly can be used for evil, as the Church admits (Inter Mirifica 2), it is a gross simplification to say it is "created by Satan" or intrinsically evil. To the degree that Bayside affirms this - and Veronica seems to affirm it very plainly - they are contradicting the teachings of Vatican II, which called television a "wonderful technological discovery" and said it can be "of great service to mankind" and "support the Kingdom of God." The Council said:

"Among the wonderful technological discoveries which men of talent, especially in the present era, have made with God's help, the Church welcomes and promotes with special interest those which have a most direct relation to men's minds and which have uncovered new avenues of communicating most readily news, views and teachings of every sort. The most important of these inventions are those media which, such as the press, movies, radio, television and the like, can, of their very nature, reach and influence, not only individuals, but the very masses and the whole of human society, and thus can rightly be called the media of social communication. The Church recognizes that these media, if properly utilized, can be of great service to mankind, since they greatly contribute to men's entertainment and instruction as well as to the spread and support of the Kingdom of God" (Inter Mirifica 1-2).

Boniface said...

I did not publish your comments. I'm sorry you put so much time into them, but when you make accusations of "diabolical disorientation" because I disagree with you, I'm not going to publish.

Truthseeker said...

Then why don't you moderate that particular comment and publish the rest?

Truthseeker said...

So it seems then you are not going to publish even one sentence of my lengthy response then?

I just wrote close to 2000 words in response to your last reply to me. This is approximately 3 times the word count of your original article. The vast majority of my post was to further flesh out Baysides/Heaven's view on Television, with a few quotes but mainly a deeper context and interpretation on TV and how Satan can and has used TV to poison souls.

Yet amongst all that, you find a phrase you don't like "diabolical disorientation", choose to take grave offence to it and refuse to publish the entire commentary i have made. A comment so long in fact that i had to break it up into 4 parts to get it through your comments section.

One would reasonably expect you to moderate some particular sentences if a few my comments were too personal or colourful for your palette but you deleted my entire work!? Given the phrase "diabolical disorientation" is a general term from Sister Lucy of Fatima fame denoting a general malaise in the world and Church caused by Satan i can only assume you were merely looking for an excuse to silence me. Your words of comfort; "I'm sorry you put so much time into them" ring truly hollow.

Certainly my direct quotes brutally exposed your false claim that Bayside teaches that Television is intrinsically evil.

There is a great irony that you Boniface, have no problem suggesting in your article that the seers of Garabandal were under the power of the devil yet you take such umbrage when the same might be suggested of you. The truth is we are ALL influenced the devil in our lives both indirectly and sometimes directly too.

I will say though Boniface, your response to genuine debate when it comes to garabandal and particularly Bayside is a typical one. You are by no means exclusive in your reticence to discuss details or real facts about Garabandal or Bayside. Particularly when you hold the power of publish. When it comes to apparition sites people prefer to keep things vague and traffic in mockery and gossip. As soon a real in depth analysis and debate comes to the fore they become uneasy and queasy. The debate is then quickly silenced and shut down by one excuse or another.

I suppose the only crumb of comfort i can take from all my time and effort in writing to you is that you have at least now publically acknowledged you are actually deleting my comments and responses instead of falsely stating that "no comment has ever been deleted".

Junípero said...

1º) Ser "antiaparicionista" es insensato, una falta de sentido; no se puede tener una postura ideológica o prejuiciosa frente a un hecho sobrenatural, pues se corre el riesgo de tener una actitud simplemente anti-sobrenatural.
Por lo tanto, ese argumento nada concluye.
2º) Las declaraciones posteriores de las supuestas videntes no cuentan para nada; lo que debe juzgarse es si la Virgen María Nuestra Señora se apareció o no se apareció en Garabandal y no la vida posterior de las videntes, ni sus declaraciones, ni ningún hecho posterior referido a ellas. Por otra parte, dichas declaraciones posteriores no son unánimes, sino fragmentarias y contradictorias con otras anteriores de ellas mismas.
3º) Está, por otra parte, una serie de hechos sobrenaturales filmados, fotografiados y perfectamente registrados que no pueden desecharse sin más, ni atribuírsele origen diabólico sin pruebas concluyentes. Las "carreritas" hacia atrás, mirando al Cielo y sin tropezar; la misteriosa Comunión de Conchita González; la ausencia de dolor durante los éxtasis; la ausencia de dolor posterior en los golpes infligidos durante los éxtasis, las visiones del P. Luis Andreu, quien murió pocas horas después de acaecidas y de referirlas a otros sacerdotes. Hay más, por supuesto.
4º) La negativa de Nuestra Señora de bendecir rosarios ya benditos puede tener 100 explicaciones ortodoxas. No es de por sí, creo, una nota descalificante.
5º) Joe Lomangino aún vive, aún es ciego, y todavía no ha tenido lugar el "Gran Milagro"; ¿qué concluye esto...? Nada.
6º) Garabandal no está unido en nada a los episodios de Medjurgorje o Bayside, que corren por cuerda separada y son completamente distintos. Por eso, no es recomendable aunarlos. Y
7º) Francamente, en el estado actual de la Iglesia, esperar que algún Obispo apruebe o desapruebe una aparición mariana con argumentos serios o con verdadera sensibilidad sobrenatural, es pedirle peras al olmo. No son capaces, o no quieren, contrarrestar eficazmente una revolución dentro de la Iglesia como ésta o esta otra, pero muestran suma diligencia para amonestar y molestar a los Franciscanos de la Inmaculada, o para mortificar a un anciano. ¿Y debemos creerle lo que digan sobre una presunta aparición de Nuestra Señora...? Please...
Gracias por su tiempo.

Unknown said...

A thought for you Boniface....a person could easily get burnt out responding to trolls.

Anonymous said...

I personally have reserved judgment on Garabandal. The seers say there will be a a great warning and we shall see if it happens. If it does, that will be proof enough for anyone. If not , then the visons are false.

H said...

I always did hate going on the Tube, but calling in a diabolical invention? Mind the gap, indeed!

H said...

I always did hate going on the Tube, but calling in a diabolical invention? Mind the gap, indeed!

Anonymous said...

Joey Lomangino died June 18th, 2014

Unknown said...

Well, with the passing away of Joey Lomangino we can now say that the Warning did not happen as even the Miracle and his eyes did not first witness the Warning.

Unknown said...

Failed to add, Boniface, that I agree with every point in your Garabandal article. It is sound and well thought out. Thank you.

Miles Mariae said...


in a recent book on Garabandal by Jose Louis saavedra we find an endorsement from mari cruz-

"I have been very happy with the news of the Ph. D thesis of José Luís Saavedra. It seems to me a great and necessary idea, and I sincerely believe that a study like this was needed trying to deepen with rigor in the work that Our Mother began in Garabandal on July 2, 1961. We all have a serious duty to make known what she told us!

It also brings to my memory, so many gifts, so many presents: the greatest wonder we have contemplated in this world. Such experience, impossible to explain, sealed in my soul the sure faith, full of hope. I thank God for his election and this opportunity to repeat the message entrusted to us by Our Mother:

“We have to make many sacrifices, much penance, visit the Blessed Sacrament, but first, we have to be very good. And if we do not, we will be punished. The cup is already being filled, and if we do not change, a very great punishment will come. ”

They are short and very simple words. Even so, we did not understand anything at first. We did not know what she meant by “sacrifices”, “penance”. That’s why the Blessed Virgin forbade us to release it. We had to understand it first. She herself started to teach it to us, with an attention, patience and kindness that only now we can understand well. I cannot say anything more important than the message of Our Mother.

Mari Cruz González, visionary of Garabandal"

What about that?

She has changed her tune. This nulifies everything in your article because at best we can no longer consider marie Cruz' earlier testimony to be her last word on the subject, the cloud has lifted and once again she remembers exactly what happened.

Boniface said...

Miles Mariae,

My position remains the same as ever. The local bishops have condemned this. Joey Lomangino died still blind. The apparitions are ridiculous and will soon be relegated to the historical dustbin with all other fake apparitions.

Anonymous said...

Dear Boniface,

I read your blog from time to time, I appreciate the research you put into your posts thank you.

I am the son of Mari Loli, one of the four from Garabandal. I need to point out that there is at least one serious factual error in the comments that you’ve made on this topic:

On August 16th you wrote “The local bishops have condemned this.”

This is demonstrably not true. Neither the local bishops nor any other Church authority has ever “condemned” Garabandal.

As you know, the the Church, through the local ordinary, investigates apparition claims and then makes one of 3 findings:

1. "Constat de non supernaturalitate" (It is established that there is nothing supernatural here) .
2. "Non constat de supernaturalitate" ( It is not established that something supernatural is here)
3. “Constat de supernaturalitate “ (It is established that something supernatural is here)

Currently, in the case of Garabandal, the finding is “Non Constat de supernaturalite”. To make such a finding, it is also necessary that Garabandal contain nothing contrary to faith and morals. And indeed, the commission stated “We find nothing in need of ecclesiastical censure or condemnation, neither in the doctrine nor in the spiritual recommendations supposedly addressed to the faithful.”

Those categories and the general Church procedure for investigating apparitions are explained in a document called “Norms of the Congregation for Proceeding in Judging Alleged Apparitions and Revelations” Google that phrase and the first link should be to the original doc on vatican.va

The Garabandal commission reports are also publicly available a few places online — and if you don’t trust those sources, copies are available from the Santander diocese.

It is one thing to give your opinion that Garabandal is not worthy of belief — but it’s important to be precise and accurate when citing Church findings (particularly on a blog which deals with other complex matters of the church where precision is very important). The word “condemned” means something specific — something not applicable here.

You also said a few other things about Garabandal which I know to be misleading but these statements are harder for me to disprove so I won’t get into them (though I can if you’re open to the discussion).

Thank you

Miles Mariae said...

Dear Polaris,

Thank you for your comment,

I would love to ask you more questions in a private message,

But one thing in particular I wondered was on something I think I read about a while ago, I may be confused, perhaps it was your late mother (God rest her soul) or Jacinta or Mari Cruz, but I remember reading one of these 3 had written a diary around the epoch of the apparitions and that this diary would only be released after that seer's passing.....

I just wondered if it had been your mother, Mari Loli who had a diary that would shortly be released in public.

I also find it impressive that your faith has no depleted in spite of the fact that I heard it reported that your late mother had known the date of the warning, that being the case.... I wondered why Our Lady would share the date with her if she wouldn't be alive to announce it...

In Christ, reply in private if you prefer, I believe Our Lady appeared in Garabandal.

Fr H

Anonymous said...

Not for nothing....Consider this. St Pio cured a woman named Gemma Di Giorgi of her blindness. What's very interesting here is Gemma was born without pupils. Now even after St Pio made her see again, she still doesn't have pupils! Dwell on that. Still sure Joey couldn't see...if only just for a moment before his death?

jim martin said...

I pity Boniface come the warning. Such arrogance and insults against the warnings of the Blessed Mother. I solemnly beg all readers not to follow this man in his errors.

Boniface said...

@Jim Martin,

Joey Lomangino died blind. It's all a farce. It always was.

Miles Christi resístens said...

At least Gemma Di Giorgi had eyeballs, but Joey Lomangino hadn’t it. After his accident, he losed his eyeballs, and never recovered it.