Catholics who claim they have seen the Virgin Mary will be forced to remain silent about the apparitions until a team of psychologists, theologians, priests and exorcists have fully investigated their claims under new Vatican guidelines aimed at stamping out false claims of miracles.
The Pope has instructed the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, formerly the Holy Office of the Inquisition, to draw up a new handbook to help bishops snuff out an explosion of bogus heavenly apparitions.
Benedict XVI plans to update the Vatican's current rules on investigating apparitions to help distinguish between true and false claims of visions of Jesus and the Virgin Mary, messages, stigmata (the appearances of the five wounds of Christ), weeping and bleeding statues and Eucharistic miracles.
Monsignor Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, a respected Spanish Jesuit archbishop, has been placed in charge of drawing up the handbook, known as a "vademecum", which will update the current rules set in 1978.
According to Petrus, an Italian online magazine which leans towards conservative elements in the Vatican, anyone who claims to have seen an apparition will only be believed as long as they remain silent and do not court publicity over their claims. If they refuse to obey, this will be taken as a sign that their claims are false.
The visionaries will then be visited by a team of psychiatrists, either atheists or Catholics, to certify their mental health while theologians will assess the content of any heavenly messages to see if they contravene Church teachings.
If the visionary is considered credible they will ultimately be questioned by one or more demonologists and exorcists to exclude the possibility that Satan is hiding behind the apparitions in order to deceive the faithful.
So where does one, start on, delusional psychotics, who believe in this sort of drivel?
1.) If people see a mystical entity resembling Mary Magdalene – how will they tell it’s her in the first place? Does she wear a name tag? Will your friendly local church do a line-up of apparitions at some later stage, and ask you to pick-out, the one you saw?
2.) How often do Scientologists, Hindus and Muslims etc, report seeing visions of this ‘Mary’ chick?
3.) If this Virgin, tells you “I was raped by God” will the Church take your claims more seriously?
4.) Surely if you believe in aspirations, the most normal human reaction, would be to tell some one, not bottle it-up for six months, and casually bring-it-up a dinner party?
5.) How can a layman tell the difference between a heavenly apparition, or say one, disguised by nasty-old Satan to appear like it?
6.) When first confronted with an apparition claiming to be The Virgin Mary, should you ask for evidence her hymen is still in tact?
Boy, oh boy, what an absolute load of utter cobblers - surely, no rational educated person can believe any of this stuff?
Sadly, the answer is yes, there are people that have this as their 'reality', and by & large,they don't happen to live in mud-huts, in deepest Africa.
PS: 'Mary' the well-stacked lady at the top of the page, is the inspiration of Chilean fashion-designer Ricardo Oyazun. Only his 'vision', was not shared by The Catholic Church and its followers, who 'decorated' his house in human excrement, and made threats to kill him & his family. Perhaps he should have followed the official process?