I am very permissive about people using links to support a point they are trying to make in the ‘Comments’ sections. Unless it is a site that has been condemned by the Church or is overtly fomenting rebellion and apostasy, I err on the side of allowing even dubious links, provided it is used to illustrate a point the reader is trying to make. But I must ask you NOT to make a comment whose sole purpose is to link people to another site, unless it is one I already link to at the right hand side of this page.
First, it is my prerogative to choose which sites I want to generally link to from this site. To try to prorogue me on that is unseemly, particularly given I am glad to review sites that are recommended to me through email. I take a while to vet those, particularly if they involve any sort of private revelation, but a few have been added through that means. Second, I like to keep the number of permanent links low here. I don’t want to overwhelm readers with sites – like an overgrown flower garden gone to ruin in which there is no rhyme or reason. I like for each link to serve a particular purpose. It may be to give a well-reasoned alternative point of view that is contrary to the way many of us here think, but I have a purpose for each of the links.
I am most permissive with links to sites that do NOT involve private revelation. I like them to be high-quality, so that whether you are getting something that confirms or challenges the way most of us think here, you will get something that is fairly consistently well-reasoned and well-sourced. I don’t like getting slop analysis – I sometimes dismissed staffers who did so when I was in politics – and I don’t want you getting slop analysis, either. I tend to be a bit more demanding on analyses that support my point of view than those that oppose it. Fatal errors come more frequently dressed up as pieces that agree with you than as those that don’t.
As many of you know, I am concerned at the abuse that is rising of people who put more stock in private revelation than what Scripture and the Church authoritatively say. At its very best, private revelation is neither the meat nor the potatoes of the Christian meal: it is only the salt – or perhaps the sauce – that helps digest that which is really necessary to nourish us. Unfortunately, there are some very bad sauces out there, some that are leading people to choke on apostasy. In fact, I am coming to believe that the great apostasy of our age will be led through the instrument of a disordered appetite for private revelation at the expense of Scripture and Magisterium. I worry sometimes that, with my candid discussion of my own private revelations, I may be adding to the mania, if not directly to the error. But I have not been forbidden, so I figure it may please God in His time to combat the abuse of private revelation with obedient sources of it. If ever I were forbidden to speak of private revelation by lawful authority, a part of me would be exceeding glad, for I am well persuaded that truth rises and stands on its own merit…it is either consistent with faith and morals or contrary to it. That, it seems to me, is enough. As a baptized Catholic, I have the absolute right to speak publicly on matters of the faith, with only their orthodoxy submitted for judgment. But the hierarchy has the absolute right to forbid the dissemination of private revelation as the source of such reflections. To quit the field of what is clearly becoming a source of much abuse would be no loss to me, though I suspect the Lord may have another purpose in mind, so I slog on. I am actually rather jealous of Connie Rossini, author of the Contemplative Homeschool link at right. Her website is a little gem. In this piece, “How to Behave in These End Times,” she discusses her entirely healthy attitude towards private revelation. Would that we all had such simple, direct faith in Scripture and the Magisterium!
Some readers have been submitting comments that are simply efforts to redirect people to their favorite sites of private revelation…and some have gotten almost frantic that I don’t clear those comments. I don’t and I won’t. If you want to use a link to a specific piece that illustrates a point you are trying to make in a well-reasoned comment, I will almost always clear it. Among sites I do not permanently link to are some I reject, some I approve, and some I am uncertain of. On the latter two categories – and even on some of the former – I am indulgent when they are part of a larger point you make, for I am not under the illusion that I am always right. But what I link to generally is a tacit endorsement – and I get to choose what I endorse at this site. On matters of private revelation, I am entirely comfortable with Mark Mallett, Pelianito and those messages given by Mirijana from Medjugorje. The content is sound and the linguistic rhythms and personalities behind them feel authentic to me. That’s pretty much it for me.
Now, the site most often and vigorously being pushed on me are the “Locutions to the World.” I agree with about 80% of the content at the site, I am impressed by both the piety and care of many involved with it, and I appreciate many of the areas it touches on, but I am unconvinced that it is supernatural in origin rather than just refined private meditations. Part of the reason is that Our Lady never talks there in the voice with which she speaks to me…the language and the rhythms are not the same. Oh, sometimes it is close, but never closer than a really good actress’ performance. It feels kind of like Meryl Streep starring in the role of Our Lady to me. That is entirely personal, but it is a means I have used for decades when my priests have asked me to consider something – and it is the means by which I discerned from the first, seemingly pious message from Maria Divine Mercy, that she was an utter fraud. So I do not consider it dispositive, but I don’t discount it either.
More troubling is how many of the alleged locutions name specific persons in the world today, assigning them casually either to satan’s team or to God’s. My visitors tell me of events, usually in large sweep, sometimes in small detail. Then they discuss what they signify and how I must study and prepare for them. It is relatively rare for them to mention specific living persons at all. With one exception, when they do, they invariably urge me to pray for those persons intensely, that they may be reclaimed to heaven or supported in their efforts to bring others to Christ. Even in the one exception, which was Menses, there is a powerful undercurrent of pity and grief. My visitors have occasionally rebuked me for dismissing someone as beyond help or hope; they have never, themselves, so casually dismissed a living person as an agent of the satan. That frequent characteristic of the ‘Locutions to the World’ is so wildly out of character with my experience of heavenly visitors that I have trouble countenancing these things as authentic even when I completely agree with them.
So again, make what proposals you will in an email to me. I will keep permanent links to a minimum, but you may find a real gem I want to add, particularly in the realm of theology, discussion, preparation, and devotions. On sites that feature private revelation, expect a much longer wait. Remember, it took me almost a year before I concluded I was completely enthusiastic about Mark Mallett. On ‘Locutions to the World,’ I bear them no animus and you are free to use specific instances in support of a point you make in a comment. They may be right and I may be wrong, but I have already examined it and will not put up a permanent link to it.