All About Mary

Apparitions: Why so Many

Q: Why do there seem to be so many Marian apparitions?

A: "The increase in reports of apparitions may suggest that there is a spiritual hunger today that goes beyond institutional churches," says the Rev. Johann Roten, a Marianist priest who directs the Marian Library-International Marian Research Institute at the University of Dayton. "There's a need for the mystery to be put back in people's lives. Apparitions may be one of God's many answers to these needs."

"Apparitions remind us that Christianity is a religious tradition based on mediation," says Roten, a "cautious believer" in apparitions. "God is not immediately present, but he gives himself to be understood and shared. He entrusts himself or his message to Mary, who in turn entrusts this same message to the visionary who passes it on to a multitude of people. These again share the message with others."

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