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Pope appoints new envoy to Medjugorje

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Anna Raisa Favale / Aleteia

Statua della Madonna a Medjugorje

Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 11/29/21

Archbishop Cavalli replaces Archbishop Hoser, who passed away in August, on pastoral mission to Marian shrine.

Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Aldo Cavalli as his apostolic visitor of special character for the parish of Medjugorje (Bosnia Herzegovina).

The Italian, who has been up to now the nuncio in the Netherlands, replaces the previous apostolic visitor to the Marian shrine, Polish Archbishop Henryk Hoser, who died August 14.

Born in 1946, Aldo Cavalli was ordained in Bergamo in 1971 and joined the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy – “the school of the nuncios” – in 1975. In 1979 he began to serve in papal diplomacy. He has served in various countries of west and North Africa, and South America.

He also served as the pope’s representative at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

A controversial place of faith

For almost 40 years, Medjugorje, a small town in Bosnia and Herzegovina, has been a complex issue for the Holy See. It is claimed that the Virgin started appearing there in 1981, and since, some 2 million people travel there each year on pilgrimages.

Pope Francis entrusted Archbishop Hoser with the task of accompanying in a “stable and continuous” way, the parish community of Medjugorje and the many faithful who go there on pilgrimage and “whose needs require special attention.”

Archbishop Hoser was sent to Medjugorje with a strictly pastoral task, without entering into questions regarding the purported Marian apparitions.

Consider some of the complexity of Medjugorje below:

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