THE CHURCHS OFFICIAL POSITION WITH
A Great Struggle Against the Lady of All Peoples
As soon as the apparitions began, the messages of the Lady of All Peoples aroused a great controversy within the Church itself. A first commission of enquiry in 1956 concluded with a negative judgment which was published without signature, on the second page of LOsservatore Romano of May 25, 1974. However, the flaws in this enquiry soon came to light. Moreover, the enquiry was conducted at a time when the signs contained in Marys words (The Lady of All Peoples, April 4, 1954) had not yet been realized. Therefore, it was best to wait upon events.
More than 200 Imprimaturs Granted the Prayer
Yet, the prayer the Lady gave to the seeress on February 11, 1951, was translated in many languages and received over two hundred imprimaturs, given by cardinals, bishops and vicars general the world over.
An Enquiry Is Not Infallible
Although it is true that in the beginning the words and pictures of the Lady appeared enigmatic, it seems that it was Raoul Auclair, a resident of Paris at the time, who received the signal honor, through a grace from Mary, to draw the publics attention to the messages through a conference given in Paris on February 19, 1966, and to explain their eschatological dimension. His conference was immediately translated into several languages, and the prayer of the Lady quickly spread throughout the world, so that all peoples could recite it in order to be preserved from corruption, disaster and war.
In December 1979, Raoul Auclair went to Rome where he met His Eminence Cardinal Seper, then the Prefect for the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, who confided to him that an enquiry is not infallible. It can be reopened.
Since that time, new developments have been submitted to the attention of the Church. And the Church did not close itself to the light of the truth, remembering that a good tree cannot produce bad fruit, or a bad tree produce good fruit!
Official Recognition of the Prayer
In fact, on May 31, 1996, on the feast of the Visitation of Mary, His Excellency Most Reverend Henrik Bomers, Bishop of Haarlem in the Netherlands, and Bishop Jozef Punt, his Auxiliary Bishop, signed a decree authorizing public devotion to the prayer given by the Lady of All Peoples, a prayer which, in 1951 had received the approval of a previous bishop of the diocese in which the apparitions took place. Moreover, this decree leaves the People of God entirely free to form its own judgment with regard to these apparitions. The Church cannot, for the moment, make a pronouncement on the supernatural character of the apparitions or the contents of the messages. Each one is free to form a judgment, according to his or her conscience.
Here is the official text translated from the Dutch:
THE BISHOPS HOUSE, HAARLEM
Friday, May 31, 1996
N O T I F I C A T I O N
for the diocesan faithful of the Diocese of Haarlem
For a long time now, and in an ever increasing number, there have come in to us the bishop and auxiliary bishop of Haarlem from inside and outside the country, requests for enlightenment on the matter of Marys apparitions in Amsterdam, during the years 1945-1959, as Lady of All Peoples.
After mature consideration and official consultations, we think it our duty to adhere to the following line of conduct, with a view to a clear pastoral policy.
A distinction must be made between the apparitions/messages on the one hand, and the Marian title, Lady of All Peoples on the other.
The Church cannot, for the moment, make a pronouncement on the supernatural character of the apparitions or the contents of the messages. Each one is free to form a judgment, according to his or her conscience.
The prayer, Lord Jesus Christ..., in which the title Lady of All Peoples is mentioned, had already received the Churchs approval, in 1951, through the then local bishop, Bishop Huibers. For our part, we have no objection to the public cult of Mary under this title.
At a time when there is ever increasing discrimination concerning races, peoples and cultures and especially in Amsterdam , we think that it is precisely this title that casts a clear light on the universal motherhood of Mary and on her unique and feminine role in the Lords plan of salvation.
Haarlem, May 31, 1996, on the feast of the Visitation of Mary
Bishop of Haarlem
Nieuwe Gracht 80 - Postbus 1053, 2001 BB Haarlem - Telefoon 023-5319450 - Fax 023-5344405 Postbank 43509
The announcement of the authorization for public devotion of the prayer was hailed as a singular grace and a source of great hope. In fact, His Exc. Bishop Bomers declaration opened the way for official approval of this prayer by the Church and made possible the celebration, on May 31, 1997, of the First International Day of Prayer in honor of the Lady of All Peoples in Amsterdam, which, in the years to come, would be followed by other Days of Prayer.
Recognition of the Supernatural Origin of the Apparitions of the Lady
On May 31, 2002, His Exc. Bishop Joseph Maria Punt, now the Bishop of Haarlem signed a decree in which he recognized the supernatural nature of the apparitions of the Lady of All Peoples, stating that these apparitions are “a help in understanding the signs of the times and to help live more fully the Gospel”.
Declaration by His Excellency Joseph Maria Punt,
Bishop of Haarlem in Holland, the Netherlands,
concerning the apparitions of the Lady of All Peoples at Amsterdam
as being of a supernatural origin.
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