The Divine Will: A Critique
Luisa Piccarreta has been declared a servant of God. But the Holy See has not made a decision on her writings, except the 1938 condemnation (http://luisapiccarreta.co/?page_id=240) which do not pertain to her writings on the Divine Will.
In the first below article by Fr Joseph Bolin questions those writings on the Divine Will. This affirms my objections to the Divine Will movement that makes the following claims (1) this way of holiness is radically new and better than anything before it, that (2) Luisa herself surpasses all the previous saints in holiness, with the exception of the Virgin Mary. To the contrary, Archbishop Carmelo Cassati affirms the faithful can indeed receive the gift of "Living in the Divine Will" even without explicit knowledge of Luisa Piccarreta's doctrines (http://www.transporter.com/Apologia/KDW_Newsletter.htm).
The second article is on the status of her cause.
Last is a letter from the Archbishop of Trani (Archbishop Carmelo Cassati) confirming that Fr Joseph Iannuzzi has Breached the Moratorium on Luisa Piccarreta. This affirms that unauthorized translations have been promoted and that may be inconsistent with the teaching of the Church
Where do I stand? I am a St John of the Cross guy. Although I love Luisa, some aspects of her writing do not sit well, particularly the claim of new revelation (if this is what she is, in fact, doing). Rather, the Son of God has revealed all. See Hebrews 1:1-2 or The Ascent of Mt Carmel bk2, chapter 22 (John of the Cross). So, perhaps the example of her holy life is what we should be focussing on more so than her writings.
Please feel free to contribute comments as to where you stand. Secretly, I want to be proved wrong!
Luisa Piccarreta and the Divine Will
By Joseph Bolin, diocesan priest in the Archdiocese of Vienna
Luisa Piccarretta, who supposedly lived for many years on only the Eucharist and the Divine Will, experienced ongoing visions in which Jesus gave her an understanding of holiness that had not previously been granted to any saint, an understanding of holiness as being not only acceptance or submission to the divine will, but "living in the divine will", an identification with the divine will. When she asked Jesus how it is that till her time no saint had ever fully lived in the divine will, had never reached this degree of charity, she was told that it was because they lacked this understanding, that they could not love more than they understood. She was told that with this message of the Divine Will Jesus made her "Herald of the New Era" and had a vision in which the Blessed Virgin Mary was on Jesus' right side in heaven, while she (Luisa) was at his left.
When read charitably, taking into account both the mystical language and the imprecisions that can rightly be expected to arise when someone with very little education writes down 36 volumes of such visions, the essential message of living in the divine will seems to be none other than that contained in, for instance, the writings of St. Francis de Sales and St. John of the Cross on the union of charity. (If read with indifference or with antecedent suspicion as to the truth of the message, however, it might be equally possible to read her writings as affirming an identification of the human being with God that goes beyond, or is rather antithetical to the christian doctrine of deification and friendship with God.)
Nonetheless, some grave problems seem to be present in her writings with regard to the claims surrounding this message of holiness: the claim that (1) this way of holiness is radically new and better than anything before it, that (2) Luisa herself surpasses all the previous saints in holiness, with the exception of the Virgin Mary, and that (3) this way of holiness depends upon "understanding".
(1) "My beloved daughter, I want you to know the order of my Providence. In every 2000 year period I have renewed the world. In the first period I renewed it with the flood. In the second 2000 years I renewed it with my coming to the earth and manifesting my humanity from which, as so many channels of light, my divinity shone. And in this third period of 2000 years, those who are good and the saints themselves have lived the fruits of my humanity, but have enjoyed my divinity scarcely at all. Now we are at the end of the third period and there will be a third renovation. This is why there is general confusion. It is due to the preparation for the third renovation." (January, 1919)
(1) "These writings cost me more than creation and redemption. They have within them all the value of My Will." (Vol. 23, March 8, 1928)
(1 & 2) "When you call my Will into you, you also do a unique act. Out of respect for my Will which inhabits you, I must pour enough graces and Love into you to make you surpass all other creatures."
(1 & 2) "It is certain that I have called you first over other souls. Because to no other souls, however much I have loved them, have I shown how to live in My Will, the effects, the marvels, the riches that the creature receives who acts in My supreme Will. Search the lives of the saints as much as you wish or in books of doctrine and you will not find the wonders of My Will working in the creature and the creature acting in My Will. The most you will find will be resignation, abandonment, the union of wills, but the Divine Will working in the creature and the creature in My Will, you will not find this in anyone. This signifies that the time had not arrived in which My kindness would call the creature to live in such a sublime state. Moreover, even the way I ask you to pray is not found in any other . . . " (Book of Heaven, Vol. 12, p. xix)
(2) "Now daughter, you, . . are unique in my mind; and you will be unique in history. There will not be—either before or after you—any other creature for whom I will obligate through necessity the work of my ministers. ., . Since I wanted my Mother with me as the first intermediary of my mercy . . . I wanted her on my right. . . . I wanted you [Luisa] as the first intermediary of justice. . . . I wanted you on my left." (Book of Heaven, p. 12)
(3) "It is true that there have been saints who always did my Will, but they have taken of my Will only to the extent that they understood it. They knew that to do my Will was the greatest of acts, the one which gave Me the greatest honour and which brought them their sanctification. They acted with this intention and so this is all that they received."
In fact, precisely these claimed new aspects (a radically new and essentially better way of holiness, a holiness that depends upon understanding, etc.) are not new claims in the history of the Church. The early Church had to resist gnosticism, which in its own way made perfection dependent upon understanding, as Luisa seems to. Joachim of Fiore proposed a third era of the history of God with his people, as Luisa does. If these claims are taken as part of the message itself, they are signs that it is not from God. The rule of faith, the rule of the Church, since the beginning in fact sees this kind of radical novelty as a sign of heresy.
Luisa Piccarreta - Status of her Cause
2017 by Colin B. Donovan, STL for Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN)
As of the end of 2017 the status of the Cause remains the same as in recent years. The Communique of the Archbishop of Trani of 1 November 2012 remains his most recent official statement on the status of Luisa's Cause. In order not to prejudice the Cause and scandalize others, he reiterated that all things be done in communion with the local Ordinaries (e.g. prayer groups, reading of the writings etc.), that unauthorized translations not be promoted, and that explanations inconsistent with the teaching of the Church not be promulgated, that the critical edition of the writings with theological explanations be awaited, as well as other requests previously made in prior communications.
At this time there are still NO official English translations of any of the volumes. As previously stated to EWTN by the Postulation, the complexity of translating from the dialect used by the author into Italian, and then from Italian into other languages, and doing so consistent with the doctrine of the faith, makes it absolutely necessary that the prohibition of unauthorized translations be observed. When the critical edition with theological notes is completed, and approved by the Holy See, only then will the Postulation authorize translations, and then only from the critical edition.
1. The life and virtues of Luisa Piccarreti are being examined at the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, following approval of the postive result of the documentary process by the Archbishop of Trani in 2005, and then committed to the Congregation at that time.
2. Her writings are being examined on a separate track, in view of producing a critical edition with appropriate commentary in keeping with the teaching of the Magisterium.
3. No change in the norms and guidance provided by the Archbishop of Trani in previous official communications has occurred.
Archbishop of Trani Confirms Fr. Joseph Iannuzzi has Breached the Moratorium on Luisa Piccarreta
Trani, March 30, 2017 Prot. 128/17 / C2
Dear Mr. Emmett O'Regan,
Dear Mr. Emmett O'Regan, I received your e-mail of 21 February 2017 which informed me of your study and the response made on the publications of the priest Joseph Iannuzzi. Point out that this priest does not belong to this Archdiocese and did not receive from me any authorization, permission or warrant of any kind and in relation to publications both in reference to the study and diffusion. Right now the Archdiocese and the Association "Luisa Piccarreta - PFDV" are engaged in the typical edition processing and critical writings of the Servant of God on the basis of which it will be possible to complete the necessary translations in other languages and additional theological research to be conducted. In any event, all of the official study activities at this time are agreed and coordinated in harmony with the Congregation for the Causes of Saints through the postulation. I assure you full availability for any further clarification, I greet you cordially and a Happy Easter.
Giovan Battista Pichierri