When I saw this pop up on my Twitter feed, I was going to post something on it, but got sidetracked.

Now Simcha Fisher has done it: 

After an unbroken 33-year run, the Virgin Mary will cease her punctual monthly visits to Medjugorje visionary Mirjana Dragičević, “given the absence of pilgrims … due to the Coronavirus,” according to the Italian non-profit La Luce De Maria. The source said:

Our Lady on March 18, 2020 in Medjugorje, announced to the visionary Mirjana that the apparition of the 2nd of each month has ended.  

The news began to circulate after 14:30 today, at the end of the extraordinary apparition to Mirjana, which took place exceptionally in her home, given the absence of pilgrims due to the blockade of the borders due to the Coronavirus.  

According to some estimates, 30 million pilgrims have come to Medjugorje since the alleged apparitions began in 1981, and the once-sleepy town has been transformed into a bustling and profitable mecca.  But the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Bosnia on March 5, and travel is now tightly restricted. The news that the visions will cease came a day after the state of emergency was called on March 17.

She has more. Check it out.  

Simcha has previously done an exemplary job of dissecting this phenomenon — and debunking it:

Local religious authorities who have studied the alleged apparitions and their effect on its devotees have uniformly said what Bishop Peric of the Mostar diocese again said recently:

Considering everything that this diocesan chancery has so far researched and studied, including the first seven days of alleged apparitions, we can say: There have been no apparitions of Our Lady of Medjugorje.

Crux reports that Bishop Peric has noted:

The “apparitions” have been studied by several commissions: in 1982-1984 and 1984-1986 at a diocesan level, and in 1987-1990 by the Croatian bishops’ conference. The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith studied the phenomena from 2010-2014 and again from 2014-2016.

The local and national commissions arrived to the conclusion that there’s nothing supernatural to the apparitions.

Read it all.

Meanwhile, news reports confirm that the tourist industry in the region is suffering badly because of the pandemic:

Due to the appearance of coronavirus, the tourist season in Medjugorje is seriously endangered, which is indicated by the fact that there are currently only a few hundred guests in the tourist resort out of the expected several thousand, Klix.ba news portal reports.

The head of the Medjugorje Tourist Board’s office, Zeljko Vasilj, tells Klix.ba that there have never been fewer tourists since the existence of this shrine. “Although there are many guests during the pre-season, it was expected that several thousand tourists would be staying here, and now there are only a few hundred, ” says Vasilj.

The reason for this is the fear of the coronavirus that has hit Italy from where they get the most guests throughout the year. Vasilj explains that due to the latest circumstances and the emergence of coronaviruses, tourist workers have canceled a large number of guest arrivals from Italy due to all the possible negative consequences. But looking at which countries are most affected by the coronavirus epidemic, he points out, it is clear that Medjugorje will experience an even stronger fall in the tourist season, which is expected to blossom in April and May.

Photo: Creative Commons/Medjugorje Tours & Travel/NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)