Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Millenarian

The Church rejects the notion that Christ will visibly reign on earth for 1,000 years following His Second Coming.  Maria Divine Mercy actively promotes this idea.

The term "millenarianism" generally refers to the idea that, at his Second Coming, Jesus Christ will establish a visible kingdom on earth in which he will physically reign during a golden age of peace and prosperity for 1,000 years, at the end of which will occur the final judgment.  This idea was rejected by the Church in 1824, when the Holy Office (the former name for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) condemned a book by a Chilean priest which promoted millenarianism. Later, in 1944, the Holy Office issued a decree in which it stated that "the system of mitigated millenarianism cannot be taught safely taught" (see Denzinger-Schonmetzer 3839 [Denzinger 2296 in the "old numbering"]).  (In the same decree, the Holy Office identified "mitigated millenarianism" as the idea "that Christ the Lord before the final judgment, whether or not preceded by the resurrection of the many just, will come visibly to rule over this world.") And, most recently, the Church reaffirmed this condemnation of millenarianism in the Catechism of the Catholic Church: "The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism."  (n. 676)

One of the reasons why the Church rejects millenarianism is because the idea contradicts what the Church professes in the Nicene Creed: "He will come in glory again to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end." Jesus' Second Coming, the resurrection of the just, and the final judgment (which includes the final battle with Satan) will all take place at once and instantaneously: "in the twinkling of an eye" (1 Cor. 15:52), as St. Paul puts it (see Matthew 24:29-31; 1 Corinthians 15:20-24, 51-53; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-10; Catechism of the Catholic Church 668-677).  Since the Second Coming and the final judgment will happen at the same time, a 1,000-year, visible reign of Christ on earth cannot be foreseen as taking place in between the two occurrences.  And, once the Second Coming, the resurrection of the just, and the final judgment have transpired, there will follow the establishment of that kingdom which will have no end, as we profess, not of that on earth for 1,000 years.

So, when the Book of Revelation speaks of the 1,000-year reign of Christ in Revelation 20:4-6, only an interpretation which takes the 1,000-year time period as being symbolic would coincide with the Church's position on the matter.  One such interpretation, as St. Augustine put forward, suggests that the 1,000-year reign represents the entire stretch of history spanning between Christ's First and Second Comings, during which time he reigns spiritually and sacramentally through his Church (see City of God, Book 20, Chapter 9).

Maria Divine Mercy actively promotes millenarianism.  Following are several quotations in which she has promoted the idea of an actual, 1,000-year time period during which Christ is to reign on earth following his Second Coming:

"Many people believe that My Second Coming indicates that the end of the world has come.  That is not the case, for instead, it will mean the end times when Satan and his followers, who create untold misery in the world, will be banished for 1,000 years." (May 20, 2011)

"The New Paradise on Earth is now being planned for all of My children. It will last 1,000 years on Earth and no one must be excluded, for that would break my Heart." (June 25, 2011, bold print in original)

"John the Evangelist was also told about the Glorious Return of My beloved Son, when he will reign in the new Era of Peace for 1,000 years." (February 23,2012)

"My chosen generation will be with Me for eternity.  This Paradise will offer 1,000 years of peace, love, and harmony.  After this period the second resurrection of the dead will take place."  (February 24, 2012, bold print in original)

"You will live in love, peace and harmony during my Glorious Reign on earth for 1000 years." (April 6, 2012)

"The Era of Peace will take place after the Second Coming of My Son and will last 1,000 years." (April 9, 2012)

(See also August 14, 2011; February 14, 2012; April 29, 2012June 9, 2012; June 21, 2012; October 15, 2012)

And, Maria Divine Mercy makes it clear that this "1,000 years" is not symbolic for some other time period.  She assures us:

"Know that the 1,000 years referred to in the Book of Revelation means just that.  If it was meant to be something different then it would have been given a different time.  My Church, the Catholic Church, has not declared their beliefs because they have not done this yet." (May 28, 2012).

Such a literal understanding of the 1,000 years does not correspond with the Church's position on the matter.  And, it is false to suggest that the "Church, the Catholic Church, has not declared their beliefs because they have not done this yet".  As shown above, the Church has indeed spoken on the matter, and the fact that Maria Divine Mercy knows this is shown in further messages:

"Why do you deny, for example, the existence of the 1,000 years of the New Heaven and Earth?
This revelation is very specific and the truth is there for all to see.
Yet My Holy Word is challenged.
The Book of Revelation, just as the prophecies contained in the Book of Daniel, have been given to you only in parts. Many of you are confused."  (March 22, 2012, bold print in original).

So, according to this message, anyone who "denies the existence of the 1,000 years of the New Heaven and Earth" is simply "confused".  It is presumptuous for Maria Divine Mercy to imply that the Church has been merely "confused" all this time.  And, regarding those of us who would continue to accept the Church's authority over Maria Divine Mercy's, Jesus supposedly told her:

"The prophecies, contained in the Book of Revelation, are only partially known.
No sacred servant in My Church understands the Book of Revelation, yet. They will be informed, and this I will do in parts. It is only for your knowing when I decide the time is right."  (January 27, 2013, bold print in original)

And, regarding the leaders of the Church who continue to teach the Church's teaching, Jesus tells Maria Divine Mercy:

"You must not listen to those, within your ranks, who twist the Truth in relation to the New Era of Peace on Earth.
What motivates your brothers, within My Roman Catholic Church, who deny the Truth?
You have confused My children.
Because of their loyalty to the One True Church, The Roman Catholic Church, you are denying them the chance to prepare their souls for My Son’s Reign in the New Paradise on Earth."  (February 23, 2012, bold print in original)

This message clearly conveys a call "not to listen to those, within [the] ranks" of the Church who put forward a different interpretation than Maria Divine Mercy's regarding the "New Era of Peace on Earth".  And, faithful Catholics' "loyalty to the One True Church, The Roman Catholic Church" is presented as a stumbling block which hinders people from preparing "their souls for [Jesus'] Reign in the New Paradise on Earth".  With these words, Maria Divine Mercy is advocating disloyalty to the Church, especially when the Church teaches something different than what she does.

What should be most telling in these messages is the implication that Maria Divine Mercy is aware that her messages convey a different teaching from the Church's, yet that she will continue to put forward this erroneous interpretation, anyway.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Having it Both Ways with Divine Revelation

Maria Divine Mercy wants to have her cake and eat it, too.
The Second Vatican Council taught that "we now await no further public revelation before the glorious manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ (see 1 Tim. 6:14 and Tit. 2:13)" (Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation [Dei Verbum], n. 4).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church took up this affirmation (see n. 66) and continued: "Christian faith cannot accept 'revelations' that claim to surpass or correct the Revelation of which Christ is the fulfilment, as is the case in certain nonChristian religions and also in certain recent sects which base themselves on such 'revelations'." (n. 67)

We are assured by Maria Divine Mercy that her messages are in line with these standards.  Jesus allegedly tells her: "I call on you now, not to reveal to you new Teachings, as that is not necessary.  You were given the Truth, but now I need to intervene to remind you of the Truth" (July 23, 2013; see also January 14, 2011; May 13, 2011; March 24, 2013; and May 4, 2013).

It would thus appear that, in the area of Divine Revelation, there exists a correspondence between Church teachings and the role of Maria Divine Mercy's messages.  But, we should not take her word for it, because Maria Divine Mercy assigns to her messages a role and status that go far beyond those which the Church has assigned to "private revelation".

The Church assigns the following role to "private revelation": "Throughout the ages, there have been so-called 'private' revelations, some of which have been recognized by the authority of the Church. They do not belong, however, to the deposit of faith. It is not their role to improve or complete Christ's definitive Revelation, but to help live more fully by it in a certain period of history."  (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 67)

However, Jesus allegedly told Maria Divine Mercy on June 25, 2013: "The only place you will find the Truth is in the Most Holy Bible and in My Holy Word given to you through these Messages." Not only is this statement incredibly conflated, it is also patently false.  The Church teaches that Sacred Scripture and Apostolic Tradition are the only sources of Divine Revelation (cf. Dei Verbum, nos. 9-10, 21; Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 74-83).  Maria Divine Mercy presumptuously inserts her messages among the sources of Divine Revelation, and omits Apostolic Tradition from "the only place you will find the Truth".

Maria Divine Mercy even then leaves the Bible out of the mix when conveying the role that her messages will have in the lives of the "billions" who will convert through them.  As Jesus purportedly tells her, "My Messages will become their daily food and along with My Most Holy Eucharist, they will need nothing more" (April 6, 2013).  Although the Church teaches that the faithful "should be instructed by God's word and nourished at the table of the Lord's body" (Second Vatican Council, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy [Sacrosactum Concilium], n. 48; cf. Dei Verbum, n. 21), Maria Divine Mercy presents that her messages would replace Scripture in this role of sustaining the faithful alongside the Holy Eucharist.  And, if these messages do not nourish us now, Maria Divine Mercy assures us, "Many of you will devour these Messages when you are starved of the Truth" (May 24, 2013).

Perhaps the most brazen way in which the role of Maria Divine Mercy's messages is exalted is through the very exaltation of Maria Divine Mercy's own person as the one who delivers the messages.  Her person is amplified by the florid language Jesus uses when he purportedly tells us:

"I guide My daughter Maria. She has been chosen as the end time prophet. I speak through her. Her voice becomes Mine. Her sorrow and pain are Mine. Her Love for others is My Love. Her joy comes from My Sacred Heart. Her hand is being guided by Mine. Her understanding as to how I wish My Word to be heard comes from Me." (February 23, 2013)

Maria Divine Mercy is also assigned the lofty titles of "end time prophet" (January 17, 2012; February 8, 2012; February 12, 2012; February 18, 2012; February 19, 2012; February 21. 2012; February 23, 2012; March 8, 2012; April 24, 2012; July 13, 2012; July 15, 2012; August 13, 2012; August 21, 2012; September 6, 2012; October 7, 2012; April 6, 2013; July 19, 2013; July 27, 2013), "last prophet" (October 16, 2012; December 7, 2012), and "final prophet" (May 25, 2013; July 19, 2013).  Never mind the fact that Sacred Scripture and Catechism of the Catholic Church identify John the Baptist as the last prophet (Luke 1:67, 7:26; Matthew 11:13, CCC n. 523).

And, the consequences for not accepting Maria Divine Mercy or her messages fall way outside the bounds for the role that private revelation may play in the lives of the faithful.  As the Church expresses, private revelation is not part of the deposit of faith, or the whole body of public revelation which was completed in Christ.  One would wonder then, why such warnings would be applied to those who do not accept Maria Divine Mercy or her messages:

"They refuse to believe that My Father could possibly send into the world, in their time, His final prophet. By doing so, they are denying the Holy Gospel of God" (May 25, 2013).

"And while My Word may seem like heresy today, as it was during My times on Earth, many of you will devour these Messages when you are starved of the Truth, when the antichrist will control your nations. You will crawl on your stomachs and scream out for Me. You, who blasphemed against Me, will want to cut out your tongues, for you will realise then how your words have insulted Me. I await this day patiently, but should you stand before Me and prevent Me from reaching out to souls, I will cut you down. Should you continue to blaspheme against Me, by declaring My Messages to be the work of the devil, then you will never be forgiven. For this is the greatest sin against God."  (May 24, 2013, bold print in original)

It is outrageous that such scare tactics are being used to manipulate people into clinging to the messages of Maria Divine Mercy.  One cannot be denying the "Holy Gospel of God" or "never be forgiven" for not accepting any private revelation, since such do not belong to the deposit of faith.  And, in claiming such status for themselves, the messages ironically betray themselves, because they contradict Church teaching by saying that such calamities would befall individuals for rejecting private revelation, which, according to the Church, no one is required to believe.

Besides the clear contradictions of Church teachings, perhaps a more indicative sign of the fraudulent nature of the messages of Maria Divine Mercy are the way in which the messages exalt themselves.  Whereas St. Faustina spoke of God's mercy and Our Lady of Fatima spoke of the importance of conversion, Maria Divine Mercy cannot seem to complete a message without reminding the reader of her or her messages' importance.

While Maria Divine Mercy tries to assure her readers that her messages fall within the bounds of private revelation in that there is "nothing new" about them (see January 14, 2011; May 13, 2011; March 24, 2013; and May 4, 2013; and July 23, 2013), she nonetheless assigns them the status proper to the public revelation which was completed in Jesus Christ, and of which, the Church assures us, we await no further public revelation (see Dei Verbum, n. 4).  But, Maria Divine Mercy can't have it both ways.