While Fr. Robert Faricy was visiting Medjugorje for the fifth time, he met two priests who had just come from speaking with one of Pope John Paul II’s secretaries. He wrote the following in the journal he was keeping while visiting Medjugorje:
â€œJust now I spoke with two priests who, a few days ago, spoke with Monsignor Kabongo, one of Pope John Paul II’s two personal secretaries. Kabongo views the Medjugorje apparitions quite favorably. More importantly, he says that the Pope, himself, holds a very positive attitude toward the apparitions and their authenticity.
â€œI have heard this before, not only that the Pope and those around him look with considerable favor at Medjugorje but also, that the head of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Ratzinger, sees Medjugorje in a positive way. A well-known fact: Hans Urs von Balthasar, the great Swiss theologian, and probably the greatest living Catholic theologian, stands in favor of the authenticity of the Medjugorje events with strong enthusiasm. Von Balthasar was the director of Cardinal Ratzinger’s doctoral thesis, his guide and mentor; they remain close. Moreover, Father von Balthasar is the Pope’s favorite theologian.â€