Wednesday, April 28, 2004

50,000 Expected To Greet Medjugordje Visionary in Alabama

From - News - More Than 50,000 Expected At Lunetti Visit:

" A woman who claims to see apparitions of the Virgin Mary and who has attracted thousands of people to a field in Shelby County, is coming back to Alabama.

In previous visits, an estimated 50,000 people turned out to pray with Marija Lunetti off County Road 43. With the Bruno's golf event going on just a few miles away this weekend, many businesses on Highway 280 are anticipating doing banner business.

Lunetti is returning to Caritas of Birmingham for her first public visit there in three years.

'There is an excitement, a joy, an anticipation we didn't feel in '99, so it could be very big,' said Ruth McDonald, of Caritas.

Lunetti claims to be one of six people who started seeing apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia, more than 20 years ago. She came to Birmingham to donate a kidney to her brother in 1988 and had a vision here. Since then, she's visited every few years, with the largest crowd gathering in 1999.

With six months advance notice of this upcoming visit, Caritas officials have sent out 80,000 packets of information. They believe crowds could top 50,000 this week.

'Right now, we average three to five people on our phones at all times,' McDonald said."

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