This is from the Website of TLDM’'Frequently asked question:
Is the Bayside Apparition condemned?
Answer: The unfavorable decision by the late Bishop Mugavero on Bayside Apparition was illicit and invalid as it was not based on an inquiry required by Canon Law…
Bishop Mugavero of Brooklyn before his death issued a statement saying that he found no supernatural activities at Bayside and prohibited the faithful to come to the alleged apparition grounds.
However, the Bishop erred in his decision. The following shows the reasons why.
First, he violated Canon 50 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law which states: “Before issuing an individual decree an authority should seek out the necessary information and proofs, and also hear those who rights can be injured, insofar as this is possible.”
The Bishop (or his investigating committee, if any) did not interview Veronica or any of her associates before writing the condemnation. Even now, there is no report whatsoever. Just ask the Chancery Office of the Brooklyn diocese (now under Bishop Daily) for any report by any investigating committee on the Bayside Apparition. You will receive the answer that there is none.
In any organization or society, there are some accepted procedures that the authorities or supervisors must follow while making major administrative decisions concerning their subordinates. The purpose is to ensure fairness, unbiasedness, and to prevent the abuse of power on the part of the former.
In the case of apparitions, under the law of the Church, every Bishop is required to have an ecclesiastical investigation by a committee or commission of priests, with at least one canon lawyer, and also several lay people with scientific expertise. And every person involved in the apparition is to be interviewed. Alleged seers and witnesses who are among the sources of information and proofs must be interviewed. But no such procedure in the case of Bayside was followed. No effort of gathering information was made. No proof was provided. No hearing or interview was organized. Yet he “found” the apparition to be of non-supernatural character. If he did not inquire about it, how could he find it to be non-supernatural, or anything else, for that matter? The judgment by Bishop Mugavero on the Bayside apparitions is thus both illicit and invalid.
Second, he contradicted the Sacred Scriptures which provides the norm for making any judgment: “Before thou inquire, blame no man: and when thou hast inquired, reprove justly.” (Ecclesiasticus 11:7).
Here there was no inquiry, yet Bishop Mugavero issued the negative statement on Veronica Lueken and her associates.
It can be concluded that the Bishop’s action is contrary to reason, to the Sacred Scriptures, and to Canon Law of the Church. St. Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologica defines “sin is an inordinate act.” (Pt. I-II, Q. 72, Art.4). An act is inordinate if it is contrary to the rule of reason, the rule of Divine Law, or the rule of the social order. Since the rule of Divine Law contains the rule of reason, Bishop Mugavero’s action sinned against both reason and God. He also sinned against the Church as he acted contrarily to the Church’s Law.
Needless to say this is one of the worse, if not the worst, cases of abuse of power in the Catholic Church. To support Bishop Mugavero’s statement is to support abuse of authority and destruction of the law of the Church. Since one cannot obey a sinful command of men, it is better to follow St. Peter who said: “We must obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29).
On the question of obedience, should people obey a Priest or a Bishop just because he says this or he says that, regardless of what he says being right or wrong? In the case of Bayside, we cannot obey an illicit, invalid, and sinful order, even if that order came from a Bishop. In the matter of apparitions, the Church history provides some interesting precedence. The Bishop of the Diocese of Fatima, including all the Priests told the children and the people that they were not to go to the apparition site. On the 13th of October, 1917 the Bishop again told the children not to go to Fatima. The children disobeyed the Bishop and also the Priests, and so did all the people. God confirmed their disobedience by forming a great miracle, confirming that their disobedience to the Bishop was correct, because they had to obey God, which is the foremost obedience. We received similar confirmation by the Holy Ghost on Christmas Eve December 24, 1986 at the Apparition ground, The Vatican Pavilion, in Flushing Meadows Park, Queens, New York, after Bishop Mugavero issued the statement on November 4. On that night, at approximately 8:30 PM, about 500 people including this author, while praying the Rosary, saw the three luminous doves (not the natural doves, but light formed in the clear shape of doves) coming from nowhere flying from left to right 20 feet above our heads and then flying back from right to left, then disappeared.’’