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Posts Tagged ‘Church’

Deliver Us from Evil (2006) is a documentary film directed by Amy J. Berg which tells the true story of Catholic priest Oliver O’Grady, who sexually abused potentially hundreds of children between the late 1970s and early 1990s. The film won the Best Documentary Award at the 2006 Los Angeles Film Festival and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. The title refers to a line in the Lord’s Prayer, or the “Our Father.”

The video gives us a sordid glimpse at the story behind the abuse, the psychology of the abuser and the abused, and the circumstances that led to and are a result of the tragic events. It also raises questions of how the Catholic Church polices its own ranks and the tremendous power and responsbility of Church leaders have on their faithful flock.

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In 1981, the town of Medjugorje gained worldwide notoriety when news spread about the appearance of the Virgin Mary to 6 Bosnian children. Since that time, Medjugorje has become one of the largest and most popular pilgrimage sites for Catholic Christians and tourists worldwide.

Local clergy remain tentative however, on confirming the supernatural nature of the events in Medjugorje and have urged the visionaries to refrain from further public manifestations ahead of the official confirmation of the Church. But lately, the Vatican has taken a more definite stance on the Catholic shrine:

The Pope has begun a crackdown on the world’s largest illicit Catholic shrine – by suspending the priest at the centre of claims that the Virgin Mary has appeared more than 40,000 times.

Benedict XVI has authorised ‘severe cautionary and disciplinary measures’ against Father Tomislav Vlasic, the former ‘spiritual director’ to six children who said Our Lady was appearing to them at Medjugorje in Bosnia.

The Franciscan priest has been suspended after he refused to cooperate into claims of scandalous sexual immorality ‘aggravated by mystical motivations’.

In 1985 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – now Pope Benedict – banned pilgrimages to the site, but this has been widely ignored.

Despite this, pilgrimages continue on the site and one of the visionaries, Mirjana Solo, claims visions from Mary continue to the present day. Here is a recent video interview and message from Mirjana Solo: (more…)

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