In response to the article by Christopher Gaul in the April 17, 2003 edition
of the Baltimore Catholic Review, please be mindful of the following points:
1. There has being nothing officially new declared. In September 2002, Cardinal Keeler requested that the Thursday evening prayers at the parish church in Emmitsburg be stopped and that no church buildings be used as a platform for the visionary, Gianna Talone Sullivan. That has been observed. No ecclesiastical new demand has been made in addition to the above.
2. Cardinal Ratzinger made no investigation of this case. It seems he only reiterated the prescriptions of Canon Law. That is, the local ordinary of the diocese has the authority and obligation to investigate and make decisions regarding matters of private revelations occuring in his diocese, unless the Holy See chooses to reserve the investigation to itself.
3. This article written by Christopher Gaul, associate editor of the Baltimore Catholic Review, is NOT an official document. It has no juridical value. I think the writer tries to be objective. Whether Mr. Gaul chose to write or had to write, I am not sure.
4. There is no prohibition from Church authorities telling Gianna Sullivan NOT to publish the messages she receives from heaven.
5. Cardinal Keeler has never declared, officially and unequivocably, that the messages Gianna Sullivan is receiving are NOT from Heaven. (As a matter of fact, it would be very dangerous for a person to do so without incontestable evidence. One would risk challenging God, thus putting his/her soul in jeopardy.)
6. To declare any apparitions false, the investigating authority would have to prove, beyond any doubt:
a. there is moral certainty that the apparition is not miraculous;
b. the seers are lacking in honesty, sincerity, mental soundness
and moral conduct;
c. the messages received by the visionaries are contrary to
Church teaching and morals;
d. no positive fruit is generated by the apparitions.
In the case of Gianna Sullivan, none of these criteria have been proven by anyone. To condemn Gianna's mystical experiences without conclusive evidence would be arbitrary and censurable.
Fr. John B. Wang, M.A.T., Ph.D, J.U.D.