Many pilgrims who attend the public apparitions of Our Lady to Ivan on top of Podbrdo or at the Blue Cross, speak of the ‘heavenly’ lights when Our Lady appears; lights shimmering through the trees and even appearing to come from up out of the ground, beaming upwards like searchlights.
Personally, I have never seen any of this phenomena, but many of my friends have witnessed this happening.
Last Monday night, June 18, I was in a field at the foot of Podbrdo at the time of Ivan’s apparition. Ealier, I had watch hundreds ascend the Hill of Apparitions making their way to the spot where Our Lady’s statue looks out over Medjugore. From where I stood the white statue could be clearly seen on the skyline among the rocks, bushes and trees. It had the appearance of a warm gold colour (see photo below).
I could hear the pilgrims praying and singing in preparation for Our Lady’s visit, and then I heard Ivan’s voice beginning the Rosary. Sometime later all went quiet and I sensed that the apparition had begun. By now the sky was black and the lit statue appeared as a speck through my camera lens. Using this light source to focus on I propped myself stiffly against a pole carrying electricity cables so as to try and avoid camera shake for exposures that were as long as one second. I would estimate that I was probably about 500 metres away. Using a Canon 2.8 300mm lens, and exposures rated at 1600, I began to take shots during the apparition – about ten frames each minute.
Of all the shots I took, there is one that I found interesting and seemed to confirm the stories I had heard about about shimmering light through the trees. Some may conclude that the light source is from camera flash or torches but my own knowledge and experience tells me that the intensity is too bright to have come from any camera flash.
Photo 2 shows the full frame.
Photo 3 has been enlarged to show more detail.
Photo 4 is the frame (enlarged) immediately after and taken within a second or two.
Photo 5 has been enhanced on the computer to give more detail in dark areas. But this also intensifies the highligh areas. It also shows how the light source spills onto other trees around the apparition area, confirming that the source of light is not from camera flash.