This commentary relates to my experience in Medjugorje, in Yugoslavia on 26, 27, and 28 April, 1985. The young people, the ‘visionaries’ whom I got to know were Vicka, Marija, Ivanka, Ivan and Jakov.
At the meeting which took place in Jakov’s house as well as one in the presbytery, where the visionaries go through their supernatural experience, I tried to draw on, as much as possible, my experience and knowledge as psychiatrist to observe the circumstances which I shall describe in a simple, clinical perspective, which will have nothing savoring of magic or any special emotional conditioning. I believe that, without too much difficulty, I succeeded in that.
The first thing to strike me both after individual conversations which I had with these young boys and girls, the ‘visionaries’, and after observing them continuously before, during and after their ‘vision’, was that I did not find anything psychopathological of a delirious, hallucinatory or hysterical kind in their gestures, their behaviors or their words.In cases of delirium, a syndrome which I know very well because of the numerous paranoid delirious people with a mystical bent seen at the Clinic, there always follows, though in different ways, a surge of ‘’omnipotence’, not necessarily expressed with noisy insistence or displayed fanatically, but coming across with a quiet, complacent silence: this hides the sense of triumph through a privileged relationship with the transcendent: an illusion. Besides that, a mystical delirious idea is a constant conviction of these patients. It distorts their critical attitude to reality, tainting it with subjective interpretation, with religious practices that are often incongruous, irrational, of a rigid pattern. This conviction is accompanied by a scarcely veiled aggressiveness, distrust and proneness to irritability and it is sustained by a rigid, one-track thought process.
Generally, the relationship of a delirious person towards others is altered, with no genuine ability for spontaneous communication; the interests of such a person are paltry or non-existent, since his whole being hinges on an imperative and overwhelming sense of religious mission and a relationship with the supernatural. Although these individuals declare themselves in different ways to be God’s servants, it seems that, with an apparent show of humility, they identify themselves with God. If their delirious state is criticized or called in question they react resentfully and without restraint, intolerant of any contradiction. Their expression is never calm but shows either an emotional state of tense anxiety and aggressiveness, or in the ecstasy of delirium, a lifeless immobility, which reminds one of a doll’s eyes.
A person who manifests a conviction (which he himself considers more or less real) of a privileged relationship with the transcendent, as a defense or compensatory mechanism, hysterical in nature, is not such a clear-cut pathological case. In these cases a mystical conviction appears to be less rigid and less cohesive and it is easily intensified by the presence and participation of others. The person could then adopt extravagant behavior as of mystical fervor, with theatrical gestures. These phenomenon can be displayed, even when the person is alone, but there may be a secret intention of attracting other people’s attention. If such a person is asked about his mystical experience, he will strive to heighten curiosity in the person making the inquiry or in the public, either by giving a loquacious account of the facts, or by taking on an ecstatic and dreamy pose, or again by withdrawal and capricious silence.
Such a person will however, give expression to an emotional state that is incongruous: either supreme joy or over-emphatically expressed suffering, or again a slightly snobbish detachment from the mystical experience. He certainly fails on the other hand by a too marked emotional vacuum about the events which he is experiencing. We must remember that mystical exaltation of a hysterical nature can easily be induced by an individual to whom the patient attributes a certain authority, and who exploits the deep suggestibility of the hysterical person. This suggestibility, which is found to some extent in all of us but especially in the immature and in those particularly sensitive to highly emotional stimuli, can induce collective hysteria, wherein, through mutual conditioning, the whole group passes into a state of mystical exaltation; this ends in their having perceptual experience which is hallucinatory.
Here I consider it of fundamental importance to emphasize that in all my contacts with the you ‘visionaries’ in Medjugorje I have never discovered, on any occasion, any thought, look, conversation, attitude or behavior similar to these pathological states which I have listed.
First of all it must be made clear that the ‘visionaries’ live a normal life; they are integrated in their community and in their families and are treated by others, relatives, friends, priests, as if they were not visionaries; they themselves relate to others as if they were no different from other people, or from themselves before they became ‘visionaries’. The phenomenon of collective suggestion which I mentioned earlier is not present. They differ from others only in the time they give to the practice of religion and to the visions; all this is done in a very natural way, without piosity, meaning apparent fervor, or complacency; their behavior is by preference discreet and, politely, they try to shield themselves from the overpowering pressure of pilgrims, when this is possible. They are quite open to conversation and seem patiently resigned to always having to answer the same questions; in this they are not effusive, nor are they withdrawn or exhibitionist. On the contrary they look calm and peaceful and gentle. They do not try to convince one, and they do not exceed what is asked of them; their smile is not smug or malicious, and it is not artificial. Their movements reflect only kindness and good will. They certainly are not looking for attention or for an audience; they do not offer interpretations or personal opinions about their mystical experiences; all they want to do is to report the facts and admit that they are happy.
At the time of the ‘vision’ they gather in one room in the presbytery, which is filed with a variety of object. It serves as a bedroom and study for one of the Friars. On one wall there are several religious pictures—not very remarkable. By this I mean that even the environment where the ‘visions’ take place is free of all decorative elements which could favor a special feeling of religiosity. Anyone there with the ‘visionaries’ finds that he has only the company of a Friar; I found him serious and taciturn, a little abrupt, very much against anything that would tend towards magic or the supernatural. Others present can be admitted for the purpose of research or scientific assessment, but the number is limited, in my case three people.
The Friar and the ‘visionaries’ sit down on little stools, and recite the Rosary in a thoughtful, recollected manner. Suddenly, at exactly the same time, which is amazing, the young people stand up and line up in front of one of the walls of the room. All of them gaze upwards at the same time, without ever looking at each other, and they seem to stare intensely at something that is outside the room and very far away. They keep their hands joined in prayer, and some of them move their lips, but their voice cannot be heard. After approximately one minute of time, on the occasion I was there, and again, amazingly all together, they give signs of a fleeting bodily tremor, and all withdraw from the place where they were standing. The expression on their faces becomes like ours. Behaving quite normally and with no haste, but deliberately, they go towards a table, do not speak to each other and each taking a pen and a notebook wherein their names are written, they sit down, and again without talking to each other, write down quickly, without pausing, the message which was given to them during the ‘vision’. The length of the text differs from one to another. When they have finished, they leave the notebook and the pen, and with a quick handshake they greet us and leave the room, each going about his or her own business.
I know that this description of the ‘vision’ has already been given by other witnesses; however, I considered it useful to describe it after I had sketched pathological mystical behavior so that the reader can compare these and take account of the psychic normality of the young ‘visionaries.’
Something usual, extra-ordinary exists but it seems to be strictly limited to the short period of the ‘vision’. However, nothing authorizes us to say that the ‘visionaries’, because of this experience, manifest any personality disorders. They seem to be in a world beyond the perception of others and, for what concerns them, to have left our sphere of perception.
Caritas of Birmingham
Operated by the Community of Caritas
26 thoughts on “Dr. Giorgio Sanguinetti – Medjugorje Scientific Study”
thank you so much for the broadcast. May the living God bless us.
thank you so much for the broadcast. May the living God bless us.
Pronunciation. (Just For Terry)Good program. I couldn’t resist picking on your pronunciation being you are of Italian decent. Archbishop Viganò is important and the accent is on the “o”Say it as we say “no” in English. Don’t dwell on the “a”It’s too far into the game to say Mariya (Marija)Greetings from Medjugorje. See you folks in about 10 days. Hooray – no masks here! No dead on the streets either!Luce&gioia Antonio
Dear AFOM: Tell Me Why This Is A Land Of Confusion;CAN Be SEEN In The Massive Numbers Of Suicides Of This Modern Age. The Christian Bible States That In The Last Days MANY WILL ENVY The Dead!-CAN That Be A Prophetic Warning About The Sin Of Despair;And The MANY And MASSIVE Numbers Of Suicides Taking Place In Modern Society?;LEADING To Damnation Of Such As Those Unfortunate Ones Of The “I-ME-My” Generation Who Think;And Care Only About Themselves;NEVER Learning;And FORGETTING That Christianity EMPHASIZES OTHER AWARENESS;WITH Concern For Our Neighbor(‘s);And(LOVE Thy Neighbor As Thyself!)…SELF Centered People ARE In MOST Cases ARE MISERABLE IN Nature;By It’s Causes;And Leads To Self DESTRUCTION In Its Essence.TODAY People Are Analyzng EFFECTS For Prevention;And Ignore THE CAUSES;Which Are At Fault;And Are Basically Caused By Lack Of Christian Faith;And MORALITY That IS Being Shunned By Society;AND Completely Derogated IN The World Today!F.A.A Friend Of-A Friend Of Mej.-Brother Raymond
Dear Friend Of Medjugorje: Friend;Of Medjugorje Program-Tell Me Why This Is The Land Of Confusion.The U.S.A.’s POTUS Trump Has Called The Corrupt Situation Of The U.S. Government;The SWAMP;With SWAMP;EVIL Human Creatures SURVIVING In It.When AFOM Yourself Mentioned The Weeds In Your Talk;Realizing That This Swamp [IS] SURROUNDED By WEEDS On ALL Of It’s Surrounding Shorelines;And They Extend For Miles Outward;With Other Factions Of U.S. SOCIETY.The Love Of MONEY IS SAID To Be The Root Of ALL EVIL;And As The Book “I See Far” Indicates;And Starting After The Great Depression T.V. HAS BRAINWASED Civilization With POSSESSING Of Materialistic Goods Advertised On T.V.’s AIRWAVES!;NOW WORLDWIDE!The Results Being LIVING For The HERE;And NOW In Worldly Pleasures;And Bypassing Thoughts Of ETERNITY;And The World to Come In Paradise ETERNALLY!-STARRING On T.V.’s American IDOL Program Is PREFERRED By Millenials Than Religious Fervor. T.V.&VIDEO[IS]THE Worlds MOST Destructive Invention!BrotherRaymond
This is so incredible!!!! Boots on the ground, Italy, the “boot,” Archbishop Vigano related to Marija by marriage, Friend if Medjugorje from Italian roots, and then our President contracting and recovering from the Corona Virus!! I am in awe of the intertertwining of Father God’s intricate plans and sending our beloved Mother to untangle all our uncooperative, sinful interference. So very beautiful. Praying daily for you dear ones of the Community
when are the 10 secrets going to be revealed…and there supposed to be a book I thought coming out on kids with adhd, and why they have it. Thank you for any answer, I watch each day for writing from friend of medj.
Thank you for the broadcast, and everything you do to enlighten and spread truth. We all must search out for truth, because what we hear and see all around us is permeated with lies. Thank you! I am a recent listener, and personally very appreciative to The Friend of Medjugorje and Caritas Community. If possible, can you please share what you may know about the recent news that the Vatican, Pope Francis, is planning to sign an extension of the agreement with the Chinese Communist Party! What I heard is very disturbing to me, but I’m not very educated on the matter. I have heard that the CCP will torture and persecute faithful Roman Catholic priests in China is they refuse to join the Chinese Political Catholic Church. This sounds unconscionable that the Vatican would collaborate in any way with the CCP. Can you shed light on this topic, which seems to be an immoral action. I continue to pray, and am grateful to participate in the Nine Day Fast starting tomorrow. God Bless!
Revelation 11:1 John’s told to MEASURE, the Temple of God, the Altar & Those Who Worship There. He’s then told, the Court beyond, has been given over to the Nations. Our Lady, tells us, “Return to God & to Prayer. May the MEASURE of Your [way of] Living be Love…” She Teaches Understanding of the Visionaries, Watch Going Backwards, By Leading Us Back to Chapter 11, instead of Forward Through Revelation, as a Sign of the Efficacy & the MEASURE of Love from Those Whom Serve God in Righteousness, . This is why She Reminds Us, “…do not forget, Little Children, that Prayer & Fasting Work Miracles In You, & Around You.” Our Lady Teaches Us the True MEASURE of Her Coming, is to Turn the Pages of Revelation as Slowly as Possible, Giving Every Opportunity Possible, for the Conversion of the World, the Relenting of God, While Giving Hope, Even as Some Revelation Continues, In Rebuke, Because of satan’s Remaining Strength. We Must Glorify God, To Fill Our Hearts, Full Of Love & Her Hope.
hi, Thank you for hearing from you, the words will do something to my family. Happy birth of our Saviour Jesus Christ. In the prosperous new year, remember us in Lesotho we need peace and pray that I could have success in the coming new year.
Thank you for sharing this with me .
Thank you for enlightening me with these words/song! I will read The Bible passages concerning Advent and pray for the grace to read them together as a Family! My greatest prayer is to pray together daily with the Family and live the Word! This short audio gives me Hope! Thank you once again for shedding Light on those in the Dark & bringing Hope to those in need! May God Bless you & your Family with a Very Merry Christmas Season & a Happy New Year!!!
Thank you for these words of encouragement to all of us. May the Lord Jesus bless those who are responsible for this media of communication to each and every living soul. This is going to be a different Christmas I believe.
Thank you! The Christmas Prep Messages are wonderful! I so look forward to “The Friends” messages & instruction to better ourselves for helping Our Lady in her plea! I hunger to listen the teachings because I struggle to read and comprehend like I need to. Hearing the teachings allows me to better recall when I listen over and over. What a blessed Message, may we put into our hearts, families and communities! Thank you from my whole heart! Praised be Jesus! Mother of God, Pray for us!
Thank you for the message. I really feel revived and I am fulfilled by this message. I have learned to prepare myself for the coming of Christ our Savior. Happiness, is the most important for me this Christmas. I should be happy with my family because family that stays together pray together. We should put Christ first in our lives. I pray to my Lord to grant me all my intentions especially through the novena that I’m doing now. The novena for Christmas…
Very good message, ‘JESUS’ is the reason for the season.
This is beautiful and thank you most sincerely. I shall await every day to view your message. I am delighted to receive all emails from you. It keeps me company and gives me an update of all that is going on presently and reminds me of all we have learned at school and sadly details that may have slipped our memories. GOD BLESS ALL OF YOU and I wish you perfect joy from The Lord….. Lyn
Hi Dear friend of Medjugorje ! – I spoke to you briefly in Medjugorje after Our Lady”s apparition on 2nd October outside your centre. You were busy but you took the time to say Hello to me , as I said then even though 4000 miles separate us it is amazing that you inspire so many hearts not just in the USA but all around the World and to our Emerald Isle. We are truly blessed to have you as a humble servant of Our Blessed Mother and Jesus and I would be lost without your Gracefull website. Keep up your amazing work and thank you so much for your incredible work which has Gods fingerprints allover it. Best wishes, and Wishing you and all yours a Christ filled Christmas, Robert.
Thank you to Our Lady of Medjugorje for the beautiful message.
I really enjoyed the message and will be listening to it more than once today. Looking forward to the next one. In Christ!!!
O, come Emmanuel, Light of the World and enlighten our darkness.. may You be born in the hearts of all People..and grow!! Forgive our ingratidute..!!! May Your peace prevail in our hearts, in our families and in the whole world!!! Thank You Beloved Lord, for coming to us!!! Blessed be our Triune God! Blessed and praised be Your Grace Holy Mother, Mother of all Nations!!! CHRIST IS BORN, GLORIFY HIM…!!!
What a beautiful and inspiring message. We have just had Rejoice Sunday…the Lord is coming! If we truly have Jesus in our hearts, if we truly know Him as the Prince of Peace, then we will Rejoice. There is no darkness that cannot be overcome by the Light. Thank you for the beautiful message. Come Lord Jesus! Our Love to all the community of Caritas! We Rejoice with you.
It was a good message.