Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Theologian Upholds Catholicity of "Divine Will" Revelations

Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done.

Theologian Stephen Patton (M.A. Franciscan University) has been one of the foremost defenders of the orthodoxy of the writings on the Divine Will transcribed by the Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta (1865 – 1947). It was his 1999 monograph on these revelations that successfully responded to the doctrinal objections that had been raised during that decade by many well-meaning critics, including a handful of priests. Now he has expanded on his original work by tackling some of the weightier theological issues raised in Piccarreta's writings. In his new book, which he terms a “study guide,” he attempts to answer any lingering concerns about the compatibility of her work with Catholic doctrine, especially regarding the terminology and expressions that she uses.

Some indications of a more favorable climate in which one can study her writings include the positive assessment of her work given in 2010 by two theologians appointed by the Holy See, the canonization of her spiritual advisor St. Annibale Di Francia, and the recent acceptance by the Pontifical Gregorian University of a doctoral thesis defending her work. In addition, now for the first time a book explaining Luisa Piccarreta's teaching on the Divine Will has been officially cleared for Catholic readers, with the granting by the Diocese of Sacramento of the Nihil obstat and Imprimatur on this important study by Stephen Patton. However, the author advises that while the book “does not contain matter contrary to the Catholic faith and morals, still, these official marks should not be understood as an official adoption or endorsement by the Church of Luisa's writings.”

Stephen Patton, A Guide to the Book of Heaven, Luisa Piccarreta's writings evaluated in the light of Catholic doctrine (2013, Jacksboro TN).  This book can be obtained via the Luisa Piccarreta Center for the Divine Will, 423-566-5178 or email tomfahy@comcast.net.  Coming soon to Amazon.com as well. The complete review of Mr. Patton's book can be read at this link.

Luisa Piccarreta demonstrated an extraordinary level of obedience to the priests and spiritual directors who guided her, giving them authority even over the voice of Jesus that she heard in her visions. She was born in southeastern Italy in the small town of Corato. Luisa had little formal education, was graced with the invisible stigmata, and for most of her adult life was bedridden, and lived almost exclusively on the Holy Eucharist. During a period of nearly 40 years, under obedience from her Confessors, she kept a diary of her intimate visions and communications with Jesus, Mary, and certain saints. The diary comprises 36 volumes, and the title given to this opus by Jesus Himself is: Book of Heaven – the Call of the Creature to Return to the Order, to the Place, and to the Purpose for Which it was Created by God.” The first 19 volumes were officially approved by her Bishop's Imprimatur, for which St. Annibale Di Francia granted the nihil obstat. The purpose of these revelations, as explained to her by the Lord, is to reestablish the Kingdom of His Divine Will on earth and in souls, as it existed before man's fall from grace.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I'd never hear of Signorina Piccarreta.