===== PARALLEL =====
– From the Mystical Revelations of Maria Valtorta –
— INTRODUCTORY NOTE —
Maria Valtorta (1897-1961†), contemporary Italian mystic acclaimed by Marian theologian Fr. Gabriel Roschini, OSM, as one of the 18 great mystics of the Church,1 has become a familiar name to many of the laity, due to her great masterwork The Poem of the Man-God, now in English.2 Valtorta also recorded many other Visions and Dictations which, like The Poem, she affirms Christ gave her for His Church today, battered and foundering in the stormy seas of rebellious dissent and regurgitated heresies. Most of these other revelations are contained in Valtorta's three-volume series: I Quaderni del 1943, ...1944, and ...dal 1945 al 1950 (Notebooks for 1943, ...1944, and...from 1945 to 1950).
It is from the 3rd volume of this series: I Quaderni dal 1945 al 1950, that the document presented here has been translated especially for this web site. "The Parallel Passions" is a lengthy Dictation by Christ to Valtorta both for her own consolation and instruction, as well as that of her devoted readers —and as a warning to her critics. The English version of The Poem..., now well known in the west, at first enjoyed great popularity among the laity. But like nearly all private revelations it soon came under a vehement attack orchestrated and spearheaded by members of the Catholic clergy,3 confusing and discouraging the laity from reading it.
Of course, discernment and prudence are always necessary in dealing with private revelations, but as Christ once remarked on this elsewhere to Valtorta: "Excessive prudence is imprudence" —and actually masks a lack of faith. Sadly, it is most often the Catholic clergy: priests and bishops, who are the primary instigators of the criticism and ridicule usually heaped upon visionaries and locutionists, and Valtorta is no exception. Nor is such prejudice without ancient precedent. For it was, after all, the first Pope and his Bishops who set that precedent by their own ridicule and lack of faith in the fundamental "Private Revelation" of the nascent Church: On the first day of the week, we are told, on that first Sunday when Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James and the other women found the tomb empty where Christ had been laid, and an angel who said He had risen and to tell His brethren, these women did run and tell all this to the apostles. "But," says Luke: "these words seemed to [the apostles] an idle tale, and they did not believe them" (Lk 24:10). Yet how utterly wrong were these first Bishops in their disregard of this "Private Revelation"! And Mark tells us what Christ thought of their "prudence": "...He appeared to the eleven at table and upbraided them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw Him after He had risen" (Mk 16:14).
Why always this recourse to ridicule, rejection and unbelief by those whom Christ calls "the priests, doctors, and scribes" of the New Law, specially entrusted with nourishing the souls of His flock? Christ Himself answers this elsewhere on this web site in Rationalism and Unbelief", where He analyzes and severely critiques this prejudice of His ministers, attributing it to their excessive rationalism, pride and inordinate desire to assert their authority.
One might ask why these clerics do not logically apply this aversion for private revelations to the Bible as well? Though the Church later affirmed the Bible as Public Revelation and to be believed by all for salvation, much of its content originated precisely in what today is disdainfully called "private revelations". Hence, if these "priests, doctors, and scribes" of the New Law followed their aversion to its own logical conclusion, they would go through the Bible and expurgate anything that came through such private revelations, beginning with the first pages of Genesis where God talked to Adam and Eve in the Garden, to the last book of Revelation —which on that score would have to be competely eliminated, along with much of the rest of Scripture. Our Bible would thus be considerably reduced in size and influence.
As the general bias of today's clergy against private revelations had its precedent in the nascent Church's apostolic college, so too Valtorta's clerical critics in the west today have their predecessors in the Italian clergy of the 1940s, especially in Valtorta's hometown of Viareggio. Soon after Valtorta completed her first Italian manuscripts of the Poem..., these revelations were imprudently disseminated against her wishes and attacked by some of the priests of the Servites of Mary, of which Valtorta was a 3rd Order member. One surmises from the document presented here that these priests of the Viareggio Servites were the most influential of Valtorta's critics, and engaged in some shockingly hypocritical actions to undermine her credibility and sabotage her writings to prevent publication, perhaps also delating her and The Poem... to the Holy Office. It was these clerical machinations and plots that caused some of Valtorta's greatest sufferings for The Poem..., since she was totally convinced that all of it was a Divine revelation, a gift from Christ for His Church today. And it is sad to realize how these priests were thus thwarting Christ's gift to His Church and His people, as their English successors continue to do today. In this document, Christ severely castigates these clerical critics for their sabotage and hindering of His Work —as He calls The Poem... And He leaves no doubt as to the severe judgment that awaits them.
Christ calls Valtorta's profound sufferings concerning The Poem..., her "passion", and thus in "The Parallel Passions" presented here, He shows Valtorta how much her own suffering, her own "passion", parallels His Passion and sufferings. Perhaps this document then will be a "wake-up call" to Valtorta's English critics in the West today, and also encourage the laity who already know the treasure of The Poem...to appreciate it all the more for Valtorta's "passion" that helped fertilize it with so many graces and conversions.
TO PART I
— NOTES —
1.See Gabriel M. Roschini, O.S.M., The Virgin Mary in the Writings of Maria Valtorta (Kolbe's Publications Inc., 2464 Forest, Sherbrooke QC Canada, JIK IR4), p.198.
2. Maria Valtorta, The Poem of the Man-God, trans., Nicandro Picozzi and Patrick McLaughlin (Centro Editoriale Valtortiano srl, 1986-1990), 5 Volumes, hardbound, $35.00 U.S. Distributed (among others) by Saint Raphael's Publications Inc., 31 King St. W., Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, J1H 1N5, and in select bookstores in the U.S. See also links to other Valtorta Sites given on this Web Site.
3. Two of the most prominent and influential
of these critics have been Fr. Philip Pavich, OFM, and Fr. Mitch Paçwa, SJ. Well
intentioned though these priests may be, Fr. Paçwa has probably been the most
influential in dissuading the laity from reading The Poem...,
thanks to the national airing of his biased second-hand criticisms as a guest on
Mother Angelica's EWTN TV program. Apparently Fr. Paçwa has based his
criticisms not on a first-hand reading of The Poem..., (as he admitted
privately to a Valtorta devotee) but on what he has been told by others,
especially Fr. Philip Pavich —who probably also has not read it.