Sunday 28th May 2017

Home » Featured Today » Currently Reading:

A Book Review . . . A Failure To Distinguish A Hierarchy Of Texts

February 10, 2014 Featured Today No Comments

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY

The Signs of the Times, the New Ark, and the Coming Kingdom of the Divine Will, by Kelly Bowring (Two Hearts Press, 2013: print edition, $17.86, Kindle edition, $13.25).

A list of the sources used is given at the beginning of the book, and while some of these are very familiar, such as St. Louis de Montfort, St. John Bosco, and the Fatima seers, others are far less well known, such as Ven. “Conchita” (Concepion Cabrera de Armida), and the Servant of God Cora Evans.
Others, such as Servant of God Maria Esperanza (associated with the claimed visions at Betania, in Venezuela), could be said to be somewhat controversial, while some of the apparitions mentioned, and particularly “Our Lady of All Nations” (Amsterdam) and “Our Lady of Akita,” are questionable.
The “Divine Will” movement which is associated with Luisa Piccarreta, is a focus of the book, and while it has received some Church support, it too could be said to be still undergoing a process of discernment, and so it seems risky to put too much reliance on it just yet, particularly in comparison with Fatima or the Divine Mercy devotion.
The first chapter of the book is concerned with what Christ said about the End Times, and no Catholic can quarrel with His authoritative words about what will certainly happen in the future. But we must ask, are those events imminent and can this be ascertained by seeing what recent seers, saints, Popes, and apparition messages, have had to say about this topic?
This is what the author sets out to do in further chapters, particularly regarding the importance of the Divine Will devotion, and how this relates to the Second Coming. But certainly, in reading the first chapter, the strong impression is given by Bowring that the End Times are close, and that the advent of the Beast of Revelation is near (p. 27).
The second chapter continues in a similar vein, with a focus on apocalyptic events in the writings of saints and Popes. In themselves these texts and prophecies are important and valuable, but they have to be read in context, and with an understanding that the events they portray may not happen for a long time yet, possibly centuries.
One of the problems with the book is that the prophecies it includes are not referenced to any particular sources. And while a lack of references makes the book less formidable for the average reader, the reality is that a book of this type really does requires references.
However, there is a useful discussion of the prophecies from Blessed Elizabeth Canori Mora (d. 1825), who saw visions relating to a future crisis in the Church, in which the papacy would be attacked, and also of some of Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich’s prophecies.
Bowring asks the question, “When will all these things happen?” and gives this answer: “Recent prophecies have indicated that we are now in the times of the rise of evil and the earthly reign of the antichrist” (p. 55).
He then gives quotations from various recent Popes who have pointed to the dangers surrounding the advent of the Antichrist, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that this event is imminent, and in fact in one of the quotations given, from Pope Benedict XVI, this Pontiff clearly stated that: “The real crisis has scarcely begun” (p. 60).
One of the serious weaknesses of the book is the way that the alleged visions of Our Lady of All Nations, in Amsterdam, are given credence, despite their many questionable aspects, and particularly the fact that this Lady of All Nations promoted a prayer which speaks of the Blessed Virgin as being she who “once was Mary,” as though the name Mary should not be used.
And this is despite the fact that we have the Hail Mary as one of the major Catholic prayers, and there is also a feast day of the Holy Name of Mary. Similarly there are problems with aspects of the alleged visions at Akita.
As the title of the book indicates, there is a particular focus on the idea of Our Lady as the New Ark, which comes from the alleged visions associated with the title Flame of Love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. These visions have received some Church approval, but the tone of some aspects of the message is suspect, and particularly the idea that a new petition should be added to the Hail Mary, as follows: “Spread the effect of the grace of your Flame of Love over all of humanity.” This may be genuine, but it is unlikely that Heaven would make such a request to change a prayer as well established as the Hail Mary.
However the author’s focus on Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart and the Fatima message is important and useful, as are his references to the works of St. Louis de Montfort and St. Maximilian Kolbe.
Chapter 5 is given over to Luisa Piccarreta’s Divine Will devotion — which despite a degree of Church approval — cannot be said to be properly established in the Church, while chapter 6 deals with “Coming Chastisements.” Padre Pio is put forward as a witness to the idea that there will be “three days of darkness” in the future, but again there is no reference to any source. And Bowring also speaks of Melanie of La Salette’s later alleged prophecies as though they were genuine, rather than highly questionable (p. 167).
Overall, the Divine Will devotion may turn out to be genuine, but it would seem prudent to treat it with caution until we have more certainty about that, and so it shouldn’t be treated as being on a par with, for example, Fatima. It seems to lack the simplicity of the Fatima and Divine Mercy devotions, and this is another reason for caution.
Chapter 7 deals with what we can do about all of the above, and sees consecration to our Lady, the rosary, and the Fatima Five First Saturdays devotion, as well as eucharistic adoration and devotion to the Sacred Heart as the answer. It also deals with devotion to St. Joseph, the importance of fasting, and of purity.
Overall, there are many good aspects to this book, particularly the extensive quotes from Church approved texts, but the big problem is that these are from a whole variety of sources, and there is a need to distinguish a hierarchy of texts, such that those which are clearly the most important, such as Fatima, are given prominence.
Another problem is that disentangling the future on the basis of prophecies is a very difficult task, and in all probability, it will only when the Church is actually going through the End Times that she will be able to correctly discern the meaning of these events. Thus it would seem to make more sense for Catholics to concentrate on building up the Church now, rather than focusing unduly on the future.
Overall, it is a cause for concern that the book will give a distorted message to many readers, who will get the impression that the coming of the Antichrist is fairly imminent, and for this reason, this book cannot be generally recommended.

+    +    +

(Donal Anthony Foley is the author of a number of books on Marian Apparitions, and maintains a related web site at www.theotokos.org.uk where information about some of the alleged apparitions mentioned above can be found.)

Share Button

2017 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Trump Is Pushed and Pulled on Climate Change, A Year After Pledging to Cancel Paris Deal

(CNSNews.com) – Exactly one year after pledging in a speech to “cancel” the Paris climate agreement, President Trump will attend a Group of Seven summit Friday in Sicily where he’s expected to come under sustained pressure from his counterparts to…Continue Reading

St. Louis archbishop resists law requiring Catholics to hire abortion activists: ‘We will not comply’

LOUIS, Missouri, May 24, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis, led by the Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, has drawn a line in the sand for the protection of innocent human life. In February, the city…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood Closing Multiple Abortion Clinics in Iowa After State Defunds It

The abortion chain Planned Parenthood announced plans Thursday to close four Iowa clinics as a result of a new state law that defunds it. At the end of June, Planned Parenthood facilities in Burlington, Keokuk and Sioux City, Iowa will…Continue Reading

Graduates walk out on Pence at Notre Dame commencement

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Dozens of graduates and family members silently stood and walked out Sunday as Vice President Mike Pence began his address at Notre Dame’s commencement ceremony. Pence, the former governor of Indiana, was invited to speak…Continue Reading

Trump nominates Callista Gingrich for ambassador to the Vatican

President Trump has nominated Callista Gingrich, the wife of former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), as ambassador to the Holy See, the White House announced Friday. The nomination comes just five days before Trump is set to meet with Pope Francis…Continue Reading

The murder case of Blessed Oscar Romero has been reopened

San Salvador, El Salvador, May 19, 2017 / 01:14 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A nearly 40 year-old murder case was reopened this week to properly prosecute the suspected killer behind the Salvadorian archbishop’s martyrdom. Because of an amnesty law that prohibited…Continue Reading

Notre Dame Protest of Pence Twists Catholic Social Teaching

This Sunday, vice president Mike Pence will return to his home state of Indiana to deliver the commencement address at the University of Notre Dame. For the third time in several years, the school’s graduation ceremony will be plagued by…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood is Ditching the Failed “Pro-Choice” Label. Here’s Why

The “pro-choice” label has not been working out so well for the abortion chain Planned Parenthood. The labels pro-choice and pro-life have been used for decades to help identify people’s positions on abortion, but young adults seem to be moving…Continue Reading

Bishop Conley: The Pro-Choice Political Dictatorship of Relativism

In 2005, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who would soon be elected Pope Benedict XVI, preached that “we are building a dictatorship of relativism that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one’s own ego and…Continue Reading

These Republicans Voted Against the Bill to Defund the Planned Parenthood Abortion Biz

Republicans in the House of Representatives yesterday voted for a Reconciliation bill that would defund the Planned Parenthood abortion business. This was the second attempt to get enough votes on the reconciliation bill that would not only defund the nation’s…Continue Reading

Cecile Richards Comes Unglued After House Defunds Planned Parenthood: Republicans Hate Women

Planned Parenthood abortion business president Cecile Richards it’s not happy that the House of Representatives voted yesterday to defund Planned Parenthood. The main response of the CEO of the nation’s biggest abortion conglomerate can be summed up in three words:…Continue Reading

Despite pro-life provisions, healthcare bill raises serious concerns

Vatican City, May 4, 2017 / 05:27 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The House passed a repeal of the Affordable Care Act and a replacement health care bill on Thursday, but one bishop warned that the new bill poses serious problems for…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Enter Comments Below

This Weeks Comments And Letters . . .

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “An Introduction To The Problem Of Euthanasia”

By BRIAN CLOWES Part 2 (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 23 of The Facts of Life, a 150-page treatise on all of the aspects of euthanasia, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) + + + We have covered the definitions of the varieties of…Continue Reading

Today . . .

US bishop says Trump budget at odds with Catholic, American ideals

Louisville, Ky., May 26, 2017 / 05:22 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The former head of the US bishops decried President Trump’s budget plan, claiming its cuts to social services conflict with both the Catholic faith and American principles. “Whether through Social Security, Medicaid, food stamps or foreign aid, our nation has recognized that our worth is judged by how we treat the most vulnerable among us,” Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky said in a May…Continue Reading

Cardinal Müller on Amoris Laetitia, Paul Ehrlich, Antonio Spadaro and the Three Dismissed Priests

muller

Yesterday, 25 May, the Catholic channel EWTN aired an interview of Raymond Arroyo’s The World Over which was conducted a week ago with Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). In this interview – which was conducted in English – the German cardinal touches upon several important matters which are of interest to the larger Catholic world. When Raymond Arroyo asks Cardinal Müller about the post-synodal exhortation…Continue Reading

‘Comfortable’ Catholics are ‘unwilling’ to see dangers facing Church: Scholar

ROME, May 23, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Too many Catholics are caught up in a “comfortable” Catholicism that makes them unwilling, and even unable, to see the “grave problems” currently besetting the Church, said a renowned theologian and one of the world’s top Catholic experts on the Church Fathers. “Most Catholics seem to live their life on a sort of comfortable zone, just the way that a lot of bishops live in a sort of safety-first…Continue Reading

Catholic bishops denounce a Trump budget championed by Mulvaney – a lifelong Catholic

On the day that President Donald Trump met with Pope Francis in Rome, a top administration official defended a proposed budget that America’s Catholic bishops have strongly criticized for hurting the poor. The Trump administration official in the hot seat: budget chief Mick Mulvaney, a lifelong Catholic who grew up in Charlotte. Speaking Wednesday to the House Budget Committee, Mulvaney called Trump’s budget plan a “moral” document that puts “taxpayers first.” And he defended the…Continue Reading

Pope Francis Receives US President Donald J. Trump

Pope Francis received President of the United States of America, Donald Trump, today, May 24, 2017, at about 8:30 a.m. in the Apostolic Palace, before Francis’ weekly General Audience in St. Peter’s Square. The meeting was broadcasted by Vatican Television and can be watched via this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVCm1-toVFg According to a statement released by the Holy See Press Office, the discussions, which lasted about 30 minutes, were cordial.

Serious Hitchcock Errors… Mean That Book Must Be Corrected

By DEXTER DUGGAN PHOENIX — I loved to read St. Louis, Mo., historian James Hitchcock’s opinion column some decades ago in the National Catholic Register, when I also wrote for that paper. I was pleased, of course, when he occasionally referred favorably to something I’d written. In his August 30, 1981, Register column, Hitchcock cited…Continue Reading

The Blessed Virgin And St. Joseph… A Marriage Truly Made In Heaven

By JAMES MONTI For several centuries there was on the liturgical calendars of several religious orders a feast day that few know of today — Desponsatio beatae Mariae Virginis — the Espousal of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a celebration of the marriage of Our Lady to St. Joseph. Although the Sacred Scriptures recount scarcely more…Continue Reading

A New Birth Control Commission?

By JOHN F. KIPPLEY (Editor’s Note: At this point, reports about a possible new birth control commission are unconfirmed. This commentary first appeared on http://nfpandmore.org/wordpress/.) + + + The week of May 13th started wonderfully with widespread efforts to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary as Our Lady of Fatima. The work week was quickly dimmed,…Continue Reading

Wanda Poltawska… The Stubborn Insistence On Being Human

By DONALD DeMARCO The city was Toledo, Ohio. The year was 1990. The venue was the dining room in a private home. The audience consisted of several pro-life people, including myself. The speaker was Wanda Poltawska who was relating a series of events in her life that we were most privileged to hear. In 1962,…Continue Reading

A Movie Review… “Outcasts” And True Social Justice

By REY FLORES “A bold example of social justice in action” — Follow the cameras of Grassroots Films, the Award-Winning producers of The Human Experience and Child 31, on an unexpected journey across the globe. Travel to the prisons of Central America, walk the dark city streets of London, New York, and Ireland’s most treacherous…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Our Savior And Redeemer… The Redemption

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 9 In his book Crossing the Threshold of Hope, Pope John Paul II made a few interesting statements about Islam, which I quote in the following two paragraphs: “Whoever knows the Old and New Testaments, and then reads the Koran, clearly sees the process by which it completely reduces Divine Revelation. It is impossible…Continue Reading

Penance As A Laborious Kind Of Baptism

By DON FIER Sin, its dire consequences, and man’s continual need for conversion are realities that are often dismissed or even outrightly denied in modern secularized societies enamored, as they are, with materialistic pursuits. As noted last week, recent Roman Pontiffs, beginning with Pope Pius XII in 1946, cite as an underlying reason for this troubling phenomenon a “loss of…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: In his parish bulletin recently, Fr. George Rutler of the Church of St. Michael in New York City recalled the famous words of the great jazz singer Al Jolson: “You ain’t heard nothing yet” and compared them with the words of Jesus: “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now” (John…Continue Reading

Discover God’s Gifts And His Will

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Pentecost Sunday (YR A) Readings: Acts 2:1-11 1 Cor. 12:3b-7, 12-13 John 20:19-23 In the first reading today we hear about the Holy Spirit descending upon the apostles as they were gathered in prayer. The event was marked by some extraordinary phenomena: the noise like a driving wind filling the house and the tongues of fire.…Continue Reading

The Canonization Mass For Jacinta And Francisco . . . Pope Francis Says: “Dear Pilgrims, We Have A Mother”

(Editor’s Note: Pope Francis on May 13 canonized Jacinta and Francesco Marto, as the highlight of his May 12-13 Apostolic Pilgrimage to Fatima. Below is the Vatican translation of the Pope’s homily during the Mass, as provided by ZENIT News Agency. (It is followed by the text of Pietro Cardinal Parolin’s homily at the vigil. Earlier at the vigil, the…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Peter Sanz And Companions

By CAROLE BRESLIN In 1748, the Viceroy of Peking with great frustration asked, “What are we to do with these men? Their lives are certainly irreproachable. . . . Their jailers and their families become their disciples and embrace their religion. To prolong this state is only to give them the opportunity of increasing the number of Christians.” Thus Peter…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Pope St. Celestine V

By CAROLE BRESLIN After the death of Pope St. John Paul II, faithful Catholics rejoiced at the election of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger as the next Vicar of Christ. The German prelate took the name of Benedict XVI for two reasons: in memory of Pope Benedict XV who led the Church during the turbulent times of World War I, seeking peace…Continue Reading