Private Revelations
#1
I've been wondering about this private revelation business. We're told we are not bound to believe on any private revelation under the pain of heresy, but still the Church recognize those revelations, so they must be true, right? Or is the Church fallible in this respect because it doesn't intend to bound the whole Church?

And if this is so, the documents of the CDF concerning, say, Fatima, are also fallible, right?

Thanks.
Reply
#2
I see where you're going with that, but your logic is tenuous.  For one thing, declaring something worthy of belief is not the same as declaring it to be true (a similar concept is the nihil obstat).  More to the point, does anyone hold that the CDF's declaration on Fatima is infallible?  Infallibility is not necessary to justify believing something the CDF says.  That said, I'm not advocating any particular view about the third secret, just pointing out what I see as flaws in your argument.
Reply
#3
(07-25-2015, 01:27 PM)Renatus Frater Wrote: I've been wondering about this private revelation business. We're told we are not bound to believe on any private revelation under the pain of heresy, but still the Church recognize those revelations, so they must be true, right? Or is the Church fallible in this respect because it doesn't intend to bound the whole Church?

And if this is so, the documents of the CDF concerning, say, Fatima, are also fallible, right?

Thanks.

Those are good questions. I suppose worthy of belief means that these events probably happened and that the content of the messages are not harmful to ones faith even if somehow they actually didn't. One is not bound to have a devotion to Lourdes,Fatima or the Sacred Heart of one does not want to, but having devotions to them will not harm your faith. I guess that's how I view it. They can and do enrich ones devotional life, but they are not at all necessary for salvation. There's a discussion about this in Timothy O Connells excellent book  Heart of the Redeemer that I'll have to dig up but I'm in the process of moving so it's in storage right now.

Reply
#4
The authenticity of the apparitions are not dogmatic, so we are free to believe or not believe them.  Often, however, the apparitions cover doctrinal matters that we are bound to believe, such as Our Lady of Lourdes calling herself the Immaculate Conception.  These private revelations, if approved, would more likely help than harm our souls.  it would suggest to me, especially if they are converts from a "Bible Only" Protestant denomination, that they have not developed an appropriate Sense of the Faith.  It is not sinful to reject everything that is not scripture or Tradition.  Still, I find that approved private devotions enrich my life, and I have yet to meet a faithful Catholic who truly understands them, has given them a try, yet still rejects them and is better off for it.
Reply
#5
(07-25-2015, 04:10 PM)Acolyte Wrote: I see where you're going with that, but your logic is tenuous.  For one thing, declaring something worthy of belief is not the same as declaring it to be true (a similar concept is the nihil obstat).  More to the point, does anyone hold that the CDF's declaration on Fatima is infallible?  Infallibility is not necessary to justify believing something the CDF says.  That said, I'm not advocating any particular view about the third secret, just pointing out what I see as flaws in your argument.

I wasn't making an argument, really. I'm trying to know the place within the Church of private revelations and this odd thing of the CDF introducing a positive element (that we must believe) into what it looks like just a negative approval (that we are merely allowed to believe).
Yes, I know a good priest who apparently think the CDF's declarations are infallible, in the sense that they are teachings of the magisterium that we cannot disagree with (oddly enough he seems to believe  the stuff with ISIS has something to do with Fatima and that the popes will suffer).

The thing is, the case for unrevealed parts of the third secret seems very strong to me, and that the suffering pope refers to JPII in the murder attempt seems like a very odd explanation of the prophecy.
I'm not very big on Fatima, but I wouldn't want to put all the infallible chips on the CDF telling the whole story of this and interpreting the prophecies right.

But I don't see the flaw in my logic: if its a private revelation it means the Church is not teaching universally, and if this is the case: (1) the events are not infallible; (2) what the Curia or the popes say about the events are not part of the infallible magisterium.

Reply
#6
The Church's consideration of private revelations or apparitions amounts to the equivalent of an imprimatur, and either:

1. The apparition seems to be supernatural in origin, and does not appear to contradict the Faith, so may be piously believed,

2. The apparition does not seem to be of supernatural origin, and even though it does not contradict the Faith, the faithful are not to promote it.

3. The apparition seems to be from preternatural (diabolical) causes, and contradicts the Faith. It is condemned, and the faithful warned not to promote it.


The Church does not demand belief, because nothing in a private revelation adds to the deposit of Faith (what must be believed).
Reply
#7
Simply put the Church is really only concerned from a Magisterial standpoint with what belongs to public revelation. She has no authority to bind anyone to a private revelation because revelation ended with the death of the last Apostle.

C.
Reply
#8
You might find this passage from Fr. Antonio Royo Marin, OP of interest:

As is well known, apparitions and private revelations are not an object of Catholic faith. It is not obligatory to believe in them, and because of that, it is also not heretical to deny them. But when the Church, after long and mature deliberation, has declared as "worthy for belief" a specific apparition or private revelation, frankly it would be ridiculous, rash, and reckless to insist on continuing to deny it without any foundation. Such [declaration] has occurred, for example, with the factual revelations by the Lord to Saint Juliana of Mount Cornillon, which provided the origin to the institution of the most solemn feast of Corpus Christi by Holy Church; those revelations to Saint Margaret Mary of Alacoque regarding the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and those of Lourdes and Fatima related precisely to the most holy Rosary. (La Virgen Maria, p. 460).

I recall elsewhere that in Fr. Jordan Aumann's review of O'Donnell's Heart of the Redeemer, Aumann believes that O'Donnell successfully demonstrates that it is impossible to have a true devotion to Christ without having an implicit devotion to the Sacred Heart as well, I think. I might be remembering incorrectly, and I can't find the review.
Reply
#9
Indeed O'Donnell in "Heart of the Redeemer" does, if i recall make that claim. At any rate his book forever changed my perception of the Sacred Heart devotion as being much more rooted in our Faith than popular piety would have us think. The implicit thing is quite interesting but i can see it.

As far as Marian piety goed isn't the same thing said, that no one can be a real Christian without at least some at least implicit Marian piety?

Theres a difference between positively denying the apparition at, say Lourdes or Fatima and not having a devotion to our Lady under either of those aspects. To totally reject either as false seems rash for Catholics, but i don't see how it could be wrong if a Catholic choose instead to pray the rosary, an Akathist or simply the Marian hymns at the end of Compline without ever explicitly being a devotee of a particular apparition.
Reply
#10
(07-25-2015, 05:12 PM)Renatus Frater Wrote: this odd thing of the CDF introducing a positive element (that we must believe)

Could you cite the document in question, and quote the passage you're talking about?

Renatus Frater Wrote:Yes, I know a good priest who apparently think the CDF's declarations are infallible

Did he actually say they are infallible, or just that "the case is closed" sort of thing? If the latter, he may be trying to foster docility to superiors.

Renatus Frater Wrote:I don't see the flaw in my logic: if its a private revelation it means the Church is not teaching universally, and if this is the case: (1) the events are not infallible; (2) what the Curia or the popes say about the events are not part of the infallible magisterium.

True enough. I was sort of nitpicking.

Actually, infallibility extends beyond defining doctrine. To give one example, it is almost certain that canonizations are infallible, because of their close relation to matters of faith. (Yes, "almost certain," but it's good enough for application to our lives.) I don't know about approval of private revelations, but even if such approval were infallible, I'm pretty sure it would only mean that it is infallibly certain they contain nothing contrary to faith or morals, not that everything they contain is divine in origin.

Then there are declarations, clarifications, etc. which come after the approval, such as the CDF document of 26 Jun 2000, "The Message of Fatima". This document contains information and analysis, but I don't think it binds the faithful to anything, let alone invoke infallibility.
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)