A lady named Maria Valtorta is an enigma that defies categorization since she claims that Jesus personally spoke to her from 1943 until 1951 writing thousands of pages that she labeled “The Gospel According To Me”. Reading the gospel according to Valtorta divides readers where some consider it the work of fiction while others believe it was definitely a miracle since it gives detailed accounts about the Life of Christ all sandwiched with accurate history, ancient customs, typography, geography, agriculture and panorama.
Last week we swept through Valtorta’s work finding what seems to be some amazing features where most agreed with my conclusions and so this week we will do some serious scrutiny applying some heavier caliber of critical thinking.
Rule number one is to never think that any work claiming to be inspired is equal to that of scripture. In one vision, Valtorta amazingly describes the Last Supper in such detail even describing the dining table, a short table is U shaped:
Now, with respect to the table, they are placed in a U shaped disposition, with Jesus in the centre and the table, on which there are no victuals now, and Judas’ place in front of Him.
And this is how we ate in the old days sitting on matts or short stools as is shown in our olive wood carvings from the Holy Land.
If Leonardo da Vinci’s famous painting could not figure this one out then how did Valtorta know that in first century Israel feasts used a triclinium – a three sided U shaped table.
While some might think Valtorta revealed an amazing find, this was known in the eighteenth century before Valtorta. In the Select Notes on the International Sunday School page 77 describes the possibility that Jesus and His disciples using the Roman triclinium, a U shaped table. And also in The Glorious Galilean it describes the setting “a low series of tables, shaped like a horseshoe — at which the guests reclined on rugs …”
All this of course assumes that Jesus used this Roman design. No one can be 100% certain. The critic would argue that whoever wrote the Gospel according to Valtorta was simply keen to examine and use settings from the first century which they can easily look up.
But then there are the linguistic features. For example, Valtorta writes, being ignorant of the language, she describes a debate between Hillel and Gamaliel and then exclaims “(I am writing it [Hillel] with an ‘h’ because I hear an aspiration at the beginning of the name [Hillel]) “. She says that she hears an aspiration in the “h” for Hillel. Even the Jews today simply say and pronounce “Hillel” as “Hillel”. Jews today have an accent developed from their recent immigration. European Jews still do not properly pronounce the name Hillel. Valtorta heard it differently. She could have heard the ancient pronunciation of Hillel which means “Praise”. Hillel in ancient times was pronounced Hhallel with a double emphases on the “h” as in Hhallelujah (no its not Aleluia). This is why she said “I hear an ‘aspiration’ which is “the action or process of giving it more breath”: Hhallel. This is exactly how it is pronounced in the Arabic and Aramaic and is why Bible commentaries use Arabic, a sister language to the Hebrew.
But this type of evidence is not proof of revelation since the proper pronunciation Hhalel-u-yah was transferred from first believing Jews to the Christians who kept the original way to pronounce “Praise” from the ancient Hebrew.
There is much exaggerations when one reads what is out there in defense of Valtorta as ‘inspiration’. For example, Jean-François Lavère writes on The Maria Valtorta Enigma:
“As regards to geography, in order to settle upon maps of Palestine at the time of Jesus, scholars (and especially Hebrew researchers) have had to consult a pile of documents, among which are the Talmud, Flavius Josephus, inscriptions, traditions, archeological sources, etc. Maria Valtorta names hundreds of places and describes exactly and forcefully details of panoramas, roads, water courses, reliefs, monuments, while having practically no specialized documentation at her disposal.”
Lavère concludes: “either she is an almost unnatural genius, or the finger of God is there“. He gives examples why the latter is the case:
“Let us take, for example, the case of Caecilius Maximus, a non-com of the Roman army simply named by Valtorta [329.6]5 in a brief dialog between two Roman soldiers at the beginning of the year 29. In the Work, 1 he is not invested with any role. His name, unknown to historians when the Work was published, seems pure invention. And yet, the historical existence of this personage is today verified by the discovery of a little silver tablet near Pompey in 1959, mentioning the presence of Caecilius Maximus in Pozzuoli (Puteoli) in July of the year 29. Coincidence??”
Someone without a keen eye will go wow! Behold, the finger of God!
While Valtorta indeed mentions one named Cecilius Maximus, but to say “His name, unknown to historians” is a major stretch. Such a name is found on a tombstone in York England, Cecilius Maximus, purchased the tombstone for the widow of his deceased former master, Cecilus Rufus. One could also find Cecilius Maximus in an archeological book written from 1903, before Valtorta in North Africa (see Antonii Augustini) and even as far back as 1655 in Latin (see Historia rerun Britannicarum) and yet another one in Latin Roberti Johnstoni Scoto-Britani Historiarum (1642 A.D). This was a pretty well known common name from Roman times to Valtorta’s.
All that plus the presence of a person named Caecilius Maximus on a little silver tablet from 29 A.D “near Pompey” is not the same guy in 29 A.D. in Israel. Lavère then goes on to argue that Valtorta knew that Jesus spent time with His disciples at the highest cave of Arbela north of Tiberias which were natural caves that had been gouged out of the limestone. “The description is so detailed that the researcher can localize these caves long before knowing about a thousand pages later [360.6] that the description is of the caves of Arbela.”
But Valtorta describing the caves of Arbela, or even naming it, or claiming that Jesus and His disciples spent time there is not proof of divine revelation. Arbela was known and can be found in several reference manuals and old etchings of Tiberius lake with these very cliffs and caves dating from long before Valtorta and the place was clearly mentioned and described by Flavius Josephus during the Jewish revolts and described by travelers. Lavère continues to supposedly prove that Jesus, as Valtorta claims, spoke at the Horn of Hittin in amazement:
“It is the same for the mountain of the Sermon on the Mount: “Then the mountain has another steep rise and ascends with a rather pronounced rise up to a peak, which then falls down to rise up again with a similar peak in the bizarre form of a saddle” [169.1]. The summit of the foothill is in the form of a yoke, or rather in the form of a camel’s hump…” [174.11]. The description unequivocally designates the place called the Horn of Hattin.”
But describing all this is hardly an amazing find. Qurun Hattin or Mount of Hattin is clearly mentioned in history as the place of the sermon on page 402, The Land And The Book from 1882 with similar description on the panorama to Valtorta’s and was etched way before Valtorta was born. Lavère then goes on to speak of the holy family’s flight ended in Egypt and at a place specifically called “Matarea”:
“…not Him Who had fled over to Matarea” [119.1]; “And it will be sadder than your first birthday in Materea” [133.4]; and then in volume 4: “However the goodness of the Lord made our exile in Materea less harsh in a thousand ways” [247.8].
“So how did Valtorta know such detail,” they ask? But one could easily find this in the Suppressed Gospels and Epistles of the Original New Testament which also claims that Jesus lived in Matarea:
Hence they went to that sycamore tree, which is now called Matarea. And in Materea the Lord Jesus caused a well to spring forth, in which St. Mary washed his coat (VIII: 9-10)
These are not new discoveries. Should we now accept the account from the Suppressed Gospels that were rejected from the canon since such apocryphal books are necessary since they “fill a void of things not mentioned in Scripture”? This is exactly what Valtorta argues, that Jesus wanted her to provide all the fillers in order to combat the scoffers.
Lavère then challenges that the pyramids of Giza were oriented from Matarea where the holy Family can only see the pyramid of Cheops since it effectively hides those of Khafre and Menkaure, situated just behind it which according to Lavère authenticates the vision of this scene on Valtorta’s part.
But this hardly authenticates the vision since from time immemorial this was common knowledge to travelers. Claiming that Jesus lived in Matarea was taught as common tradition. In this area it was believed by many that the Holy Family lived while in Egypt. Lavère gives another ‘authentication’ where “Jesus recalls His first infancy in Egypt” describing the petrified forests as Valtorta states:
“…petrified forests that seemed to be strewn throughout the Nile valley and in the Egyptian desert. They were [once] forests upon forests of living trees… Eventually, from an unknown cause, like things accursed, they not only became dried up like plants do…, but they became stone. Stone. The flint of the ground seems to have risen up by sorcery from the roots to the trunk, to the branches, to the leaves…”
Lavère explains this as an amazing find:
“These fossil forests still subsist in our day, especially the [forest] located at 17 km [10.5 miles] to the southeast of Matarea. It is a question Al-Ghaba Al-Motahagguera (the petrified forest) near El Maadi. This forest was rediscovered toward 1840, but has remained little known in Europe until our day.”
To say that this “has remained little known in Europe until our day” simply implies that Valtorta could have not known this on her own and that Jesus must have revealed it. But such an argument is flawed. This Al-Ghaba Al-Motahagguera and the petrified forest was well known in Europe and even in Italy. Guglielmo Massaja, page 23, speaks of “Al-Ghaba Al-Motahagguera” (the Petrified Forest) at El Maadi reporting on Catholic missionaries going to these areas visiting were many believe the Holy Family dwelt. Also Notes of Travel: In Europe, Egypt, and the Holy Land, by Clemuel Green Ricketts, written as far back as 1844 on page 99 also describes this and one can read a very similar description to Valtorta’s. And in Egypt and the East, Or, Travels on Sea and Land by Andrew Park wrote as far back as 1877 on page 140 explains all this with similar description to Valtorta’s. And even before that in 1870 in The Ladies’ Repository on page 32 another description. All these descriptions are similar to Valtorta’s and was common knowledge in her time. Then Lavère also claims yet another ‘amazing find’:
“Maria Valtorta in her Work, several times mentions Alexandroscene, an ancient city very little known in our day. She gives precise and detailed descriptions of its position “while this other [road], chosen by Jesus, according to the indication of the Roman road sign: Alexandroscene-m. V°” [in other words, Alexandroscene is 5 miles away]
For that, and without thoroughly researching what is amply available at a library he then concludes:
“Just as Valtorta read on the Roman road sign, the city was effectively placed 5 Roman miles (m. V° exactly 7.5 kms.) from the place where the stairs of Tyre begin, as recent excavations have confirmed (4 kms. [=2.5 miles] north of the military UN base of Naqurah).”
A novice reader will go wow! But that too can easily be found in Smith, George Adam, Atlas of the historical geography of the Holy Land printed in 1915, way before Valtorta. Even from as far back as the 12th century, Jacques de Vitry (1160-1240) wrote the History of the Holy Land names the exact location and position of the city and also in The library of the Palestine Pilgrims’ Text Society (1885) giving the exact distance from Tyre to that spot (5 miles):
“This place is well watered, and five miles distant from Tyre. Moreover, the noble Hugh de St. Omer, Lord of Tiberias, built an exceeding strong castle on the mountains which look down on Tyre, between his city and Tyre, ten miles away from it, which castle he named Toron”.
And this is why when you read reports claiming historical or archeological finds, one must be certain these give references from credited historians, never theologians.
Lesson number two, when it comes to the holy land, we are not talking about Timbuktu, the holy land was fascinating to Christians worldwide. It was the place Jesus walked. There are more references, art, writings about places and travel routes from voyages to the holy land than any other history or geography on earth.
Many Valtorta enthusiasts also use David Webster who like Lavère is neither a historian or an archeologist, he argues for the miraculous nature of Valtorta’s work stating:
“79-out of 250-geographic locations mentioned by Valtorta were not listed in the 1939 International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (ISBE) Atlas. Yet, as researcher David Webster observes, what is “most surprising is that these names [which Valtorta lists], obscure and unknown in the 1940s, are being proven authentic.” 52 of these sites have no biblical reference whatsoever “and 17 of these with no biblical reference have been either indirectly confirmed as authentic by recent ‘ancient external sources’ found in the Macmillan Bible Atlas (1968) or actually listed in the Harper Collins Atlas of the Bible (1989).” Such obscure and unknown locations, some of which Valtorta even describes in detail, include: Achor, Achzib Port ruins, Ajalon/Ayyalon ruins, Baram, Bet Guvrin/Betobabris, Capiotolias, Clear Water, Emmaus ruins, Hazazon-Tamar, Kabul (in Galilee), Mambre (Mamre), Mareshah ruins, the nearby ruins of Mt. Carmel, Phasaelis, Penuel (Penial) ruins, Rantis, Sycaminum, Thamara, Valley of the Terebinth, and Yattir (Jattir), to list a few. For Valtorta to possess knowledge of ancient Palestinian locations, many of which were not even known to geographical and historical experts (or to anyone, for that matter) during her years of writing, is simply uncanny, if not impossible.”
At face value, such an argument sounds impressive until another breaks it down. To claim that these locations were not known to geographical and historical experts is simply false. I can pull so many references that describe every one of these locations which I already researched and it would take a book to expose which will make arguers like Webster and Lavère mute. Why only argue that such locations did not exist in only two reference manuals the Harper and Macmillan?
Fact is, every one of these locations can easily be found in several other books, reference manuals, and travelers notes and guides which existed long before Valtorta. Webster and others repeating the argument that one cannot find many of these locations in the Macmillan Bible Atlas or Harper Collins is a silly argument.
And if in doubt send me the location and I will be glad to provide references with detail.
The problem with many in the Christian circles, be it mostly Evangelicals and to a lesser degree Catholics, is the use of recommendations on matters involving history by mostly non-historians.
I proved that Protestants for centuries by using non-historians made shameless and outlandish blood libels against Catholics, which no one was able or was even willing to refute, which I challenged the top Calvinist apologist James White to do upon his request for debate.
One can also find books in Italian from several centuries which can easily be used to write Valtorta’s books: Publications of the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum, La Terra Santa: ed i luoghi illustrati dagli apostle (1873), Pellegrinaggio storico e descrittivo di Terrasanta, In Terrasanta (1899) … there are countless manuals in Italian to choose from that give detail on ancient holy land locations that were excavated later.
Take for one example Jotopata which they argue as one of Valtorta’s amazing discoveries. Anyone can search, it is called Yodfat was first identified in 1847 by E.G. Schultz. It was easy for Schultz and others to find it based on the name of the Arabic ruins or Khirbet in Arabic. Search the word Khirbet yourself and see how far back these places were discovered way before Valtorta’s grandparents were born. In the north of the Tel Yodfat, the eastern slope of Mount Miamin is inhabited by the ruins of Khirbet Jifat, the Arabic name preserving the ancient name of Yodfat. One can follow routes by travelers and assume Jesus walked there and then write with classical language and panorama which Valtorta knew well. She was educated in the classics. History well recorded its exact location:
“the site was built on an isolated hill with a rounded summit and a narrow ridge to the south, surrounded on three sides by deep valleys. The entire site is about 12.5 acre (50 dunam within the town walls) … 2.5km north of Khirbet Qana, 9 km north of Sepphoris … Water sources: rainfall, cisterns, reservoirs” Josephus Flavius first mentioned Jotapata as one of the towns in the Galilee fortified by him at the beginning of the First Jewish Revolt. Roman army took Jotapata after the 47-day siege of the fortified town.”
To claim amazement that an archeological find was found way after Valtorta’s mention of it is nothing to be amazed about since all one has to do is access travelers guides centuries ago who speak of “khirbet” (ruin) of these old villages.
So having unloaded a critical view here on Valtorta’s work, have I refuted Valtorta’s claim of inspiration?
This is not my intention and is neither my authority. I only refuted the defense that it would be impossible for someone to write the archeological and historical claims all with the panoramic accounts. That is, had Valtorta had any access to such dozen or so books to etch her work. To believe that Christ spoke to her becomes a personal issue. Whether to believe her claim or not is a matter for church authority.
It is said that she was bedridden. But this was for over two decades in her home. Sure, one can argue that she only had two books on her bed stand, but was there a bookshelf in her home where she lived? If the latter is true and with Valtorta’s proven “strong classical education in various parts of Italy [which was] focused on Italian literature” it could be done.
As I stated in my previous article where I gave the positives, one must always be extra careful, these books should never be viewed as scripture and the claim “Jesus told me” should be personal to the author until approved by major authority. Only the author would know whether Jesus (or someone who says they are Jesus) appeared to them or not. This is not an issue to be decided by us, but when it comes to history or archeology one must always consult reputable historians and archeologists, never the enthusiast or the clergy.
Having said all this, had Valtorta’s thousands of pages claiming it was inspired as a vision been fake, it would have to have been someone who understood or accessed books. Arguing that the work would need to be written by botanists, archeologists, archaeobotanists, theologians, historians and including someone who knew what the ancient Israelites planted, cooked, what mixes made a recipe … is not necessary. There are books that include all these even including the architecture in ancient Israel differentiating Roman vs. Jewish with all the meticulous details even including how doors and locks functioned (locks had latches open from both sides as Valtorta correctly described).
WHAT ABOUT THE FOOD JESUS ATE?
Just take the food. One can easily argue that Jews in Israel today do not really have a national food because Jews came from all over the Diaspora. How can Valtorta track what Jesus ate in the time when Jesus walked Judea? Israel was virtually empty for two millennia.
I could argue that for Valtorta to make her claims stick, she must know archaeobotanists and experts on food history. I could argue that it is sort of like if the U.S. was nuked by Russia where the entire continent was wiped out and 2000 years later a remnant American descendants re-inhabited the U.S. again after multiplying for 2000 years in China. These came back with some slanted eyes for features and forgot hamburgers and only knew chop suey. Now someone writes a book saying that God inspired them to write the history of the U.S. from two thousand years ago, just before it was nuked by Russia, and then they would show that Americans ate cheeseburgers describing them as “and they ate a meat patty topped by lettuce and a slice of tomato, onions with some zesty sauce extracted from mustard seeds all wrapped with two fluffy bread buns … Americans also indulged in a circular sweet dough that was deep fried and soaked in syrup the name of which sounds like dona …”
This would be an interesting revelation so long one cannot find this in any manual as to what the nearly extinct American ate.
You get the drift?
For the Jews in Israel today, to know what they ate two millennia ago there are so few sources like the Mishna, but the best source for food historians in Israel is to track the local Palestinians like myself whose ancestors picked up from the remnants recipes that were passed down.
Indeed, no one can deny that Valtorta’s work was careful and meticulous. But it wasn’t without error. It would not make the mistake to describe any food item out of place or out of history. Take citrus, it exists in Jericho today but she never included citrus since it was introduced only in recent times yet she describes tamarisk, which is known to have been there in Jericho from ancient times till now. You would never find oranges mentioned in Valtorta’s work unless it’s a Sicilian woman describing it to Mary or it was an imported gift. Nothing is out of place. And had Valtorta mentioned the word ‘tomato’ which is native to Italy, her home state, all her work would have been rendered obsolete. When it comes to food, Valtorta would write things like:
“She then hastens to pour into a large tureen the wheat or barley cooked in milk, which I already saw Mary of Alphaeus serve at Nazareth before the departure of John and Syntyche.”
Valtorta says she is remembering what is stuck in her mind from a previous vision when she saw in a different vision a recipe strange to her. It seems to me like this what we called Gameed milk with cracked wheat. This is still practiced by Palestinians on rare occasions which we call the dish “Jareesh”.
This is common amongst Jordanians and Palestinians and is eaten on weddings and after 40 days to commemorate a death in the family. Even when this dish was cooked we used huge copper pots heated by firewood and a huge wooden spoon. We kept the method and the recipe as it was holy and as it was done in the ancient ways regardless that we had modern utensils at hand. Everything was done in the old tradition. Things were done just the way they were passed down as if it was holy observance.
Modern Jews or Europeans in Valtorta’s time are not usually familiar with this. Gameed is usually eaten with rice. Had Valtorta erred and said “milk with rice” it would be the end of her. Had she copied dishes from wrong recipes, her claims would be the way of the dodo.
But then Valtorta makes a typical western blunder and adds:
“Well. I have always remembered that Mary Clopas told me that You like it. And I had kept the best honey to make it also for Marjiam…”
This becomes a hot western style cereal served with regular milk which was very uncommon and virtually unknown in ancient Israel and is only known in the recent west. Valtorta must have thought that cereal evolved. Ancient cereal is not modern cereal. This sort of thing finally leaks and debunks the claim.
But on a positive note for Valtorta, she would also have to be careful since modern man tends to have a gauzy notion that biblical-era folks ambled about wearing togas and sandals living only on health food. This is far from it and much of Valtorta’s writings would confirm what we find in modern archaeology which shows ancient Israel had been plagued by cavities and gum disease, with rather less recourse to anesthetic and bright-white ceramic fillings loving their sweets just as much as a latter-day couch potatoes.
In Valtorta’s work we find them serving “honey cakes” some of which “are wide and flat and very greasy” and “sweetmeats”. She describes Mary’s home:
“On the left-hand side, there is a kind of long dresser with plates of cheese and other foodstuffs, which look like cakes covered with honey and sweetmeats. On the floor, near the same wall, there are more amphorae and six large vases, shaped more or less like copper pitchers. I would call them jars.”
We also find:
“Mary of Alphaeus, a more robust country woman, works at the bread with enthusiasm, while Mary mixes butter and honey to the cakes. She makes many round shaped ones and places them on a metal plate.”
This would cause cavities. And why does Valtorta explain that they made so many cakes? It is because they are small. Jesus in Valtorta’s writings even gives the parable of the King’s invitation to the wedding:
“women slaves are kneading flour to make cakes and crushing almonds in mortars to make the finest delicacies flavoured with rare spices.”
And this is exactly what we do for holidays and weddings, crush almonds (crushed not paste) as a filling with what we call Ma’moul cakes with tons of butter. These babies are stuffed with either almonds or sweet dates (Tamar) including sweet smelling cinamon.
Even the rosette symbol is ancient holy land tradition. The cake looks like a chariot’s wheel. It is the merkaba, or the chariot and this symbol appeared on Jewish ossuaries, often inside a circle referring to the throne-chariot of God symbolized in the Bible ( Ezekiel 1:4-26). Even Caiaphas’s ossuary and mosaics from Israel had these symbols. Had Valtorta described intricate details like this it would have been conclusive, but she didn’t. She remained careful.
Rosettes like the 6 pointed ones are also found on this marker stone at Banias in Northern Israel (shown above). The mark is found on the Magdala Stone as the marker for the Jews and is why Jews have a 6 pointed star. Old Palestinian homes also have these marks on their door posts.
Valtorta writes of specific berries: “John and Andrew come back with some little fruits, which seem to belong to the raspberry or strawberry families, but are a little darker, almost like unripe blackberries, and they offer them to Jesus.” This is the wild mulberry or what we call “Toot”.
But these are easily looked up. Valtorta writes of Jesus: “Sitting at the rustic table, after the blessing of the food, consisting of cheese and boiled chicory dressed with oil” and one of the disciples is seen “stirring some chicory in a boiling pot”.
Peter “adds the tray of chicory already dressed by Philip, and together with his companions he draws some very rustic stools near the table adding them to the four chairs”. This is exactly how chicory is done. Modern Israelis knew not all this which remained amongst the locals.
However, choosing chicory is obvious for it has always been known for Jews observe this at Passover.
The real humble diet of the Jews was completely missed by Valtorta. She describes many scenes everyone eating meat and even Peter stuffing lamb with mint. All this is very unusual in ancient Israel. Mixing meat with mint flavor is western tradition, not ancient Israel.
Unfortunately, when it comes to the humble foods, Valtorta describes Mary and Mary Magdalen’s attire with its colors of “Mallow flowers,” yet she completely missed out on a major food staple in ancient Israel. Mallow is the most important edible wild plant in ancient Israel which is a main staple they call in Arabic and in Hebrew Chubeza. It is the round leaves you see on the ground in the photo above and this grew virtually everywhere and was consumed in ancient Israel even until now amongst the locals. How could she miss this in all the diet and panorama?
There was also no mentions of “Jews Mallow” which came from Egypt and is still called today in the Middle East Mallochia. The Talmud even records: “mallochia” when King Jannai, who “went to Cochalith in the wilderness, and there subdued sixty fortified towns; and, upon his return, he greatly rejoiced, and called all the wise men of Israel, and said unto them, our fathers ate “malluchim” (the word used in this text of Job) at the time they were employed in building the sanctuary; so we will eat “malluchim” on remembrance of our fathers; and they set “malluchim” on tables of gold, and they ate”.
Valtorta even missed parched green wheat which was the traditional way to enjoy early spring wheat. Almost ripe green wheat in the milk stage is lightly roasted for a chewy, slightly sweet product with a savory, taste. Parched grain was frequently mentioned in the Bible. We were used to this which stems from the biblical Book of Ruth which recounts how roasted green wheat was eaten during the harvest, exactly what we did right after harvest where my grandmother would roast the wheat by burning it.
Even Jesus in the Bible rubbed wheat between his hands as a symbol of the Eucharist to come. How could Valtorta miss all this? And what about bread baking? I couldn’t find how a hearth was used which was so common even today amongst Palestinians and Bedouins. It would have been an impressive find to read one single event in Valtorta’s writing where it describes a hearth, how it was heated by the fired kindled on it, they remove the coals, sweep off the ashes, lay on the bread, and then cover it with hot cinders.
Broad beans are also mentioned by Valtorta, which was the daily main staple in ancient middle east as pinto beans for Mexicans. Yet Valtorta made no mention of a single meal and the only example she shows was that they fed broad beans to a camel. This would have been very unusual to share such food with camels. The ancient middle east did not treat the animals as Italians treated their pets. It would have been impressive to see had she said board beens were served with garlic and olive oil or if she stated that cheese was made by boiling the milk of goats on fire adding a few drops of the fig tree resin to make cheese. These things are not found in the rarest of books.
In conclusion, it is best to keep in mind that it is not humanly impossible to construct such works as Valtorta’s The Gospels According to Me. But the question is why claim “Jesus told me to do it”?
Was this a Vatican conspiracy? This can never be the case since it was later rejected by the Vatican. And if Jesus wanted her to provide all the unknown fillers in a newer gospel why hasn’t it succeeded. Valtorta’s books sits in Amazon at $425 with little offers. So did Jesus fail to accomplish the task?
Indeed, it would take several years to construct such work, but did Christ tell Valtorta to write this? This is what she claims. And whats wrong with sticking to the old scriptures? Even the Valtorta enthusiasts do not want to deviate from scriptures. Aren’t the scriptures that we have sufficient? And why would Christ mind if I believed in the Gospels According to St. Mark while I reject the Gospels According to Valtorta? Or even better yet: was the doubting St. Thomas destined to heaven or to hell? He answered with doubt asking for evidence.
But this is why I am Catholic. When it comes to hearing messages from Jesus, Catholics give you hell, until way later that the Vatican passes it only after they are 100% convinced. This is no easy task. Catholics even squabble between each other debating and writing volumes on whether or not to accept “Jesus told me”. The priest gave me 9 volumes of arguments on the issue to examine. Where do we find this in the “God told me” crowd whom the naive quickly believe. This is a much better way, or else the church would be in a mess when it comes to visions.
Please feel free to shoot down my critique.