Letter to Catholics United for the Faith
from Father John A. Hardon, S.J.
Mr. James Likoudis
Catholics United for the Faith
827 N. 4th St.
Steubenville, OH 43952
Dear Mr. Likoudis,
This is a concise reply to your request for my evaluation of the "The Kingdom of the Divine Will" movement. What follows is a summary of the conclusions that I reached after reading a great deal of the writings of Luisa Piccarreta.
In my judgment, the underlying premises of Luisa's writings are not consistent with the magisterial teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. Thus she claims that all that we have to do is abandon our own will to the Divine Will, which can be found everywhere. There is an emphasis on complete passivity of the soul in Luisa's writings. The result is a promotion of Quietism, which was condemned by the Church in the 17th century.
Luisa's writings openly promote the idea that she has received a new revelation. The faithful must accept this revelation to achieve the new way of holiness which equates the sanctity of Luisa Piccarreta with the sanctity of the Mother of God.
According to Luisa, once a person receives this "new sacrament" of the Divine Will, the human will, in effect, acts in such a way that the action is purely divine. This basic error was taught in the early centuries of Christianity and became a cardinal principle of the absolute predestination of such founders of Protestantism as John Calvin.
If necessary, I shall be happy to provide further and more detailed analysis of the writings of Luisa Piccarreta. For the present, I will only quote from the formal letter of His Excellency, Andrew J. McDonald, Bishop of Little Rock, Arkansas. He wrote to Father James E. Mancini, "By this letter, I forbid either the public or the private promotion of the Kingdom of the Divine Will Movement in the Diocese of Little Rock." The bishop's letter was dated November 26, 1997.
Recently Mr. Thomas Fay(sic), American promoter of the Kingdom of the Divine Will, came to visit me in Detroit where we spent several hours in conversation. I told him this movement needs to be very carefully analyzed by objective experts in theology and evaluated for its authenticity. I also told him that I would be available to assist in this evaluation.
Be assured of my special prayers for you, your family, and co-workers in the Catholics United for the Faith.
Sincerely Yours in Christ,
John A. Hardon, S.J.
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