Vatican translates rules on Marian apparitions

The Vatican has released translations of a 1978 document regarding alleged Marian apparitions.

CNS PHOTO | PAUL HARING

The Vatican has released translations of a 1978 document regarding alleged Marian apparitions.

June 4, 2012

To help bishops determine the credibility of alleged Marian apparitions, the Vatican has translated and published procedural rules from 1978 that had previously been available only in Latin.

The Norms regarding the manner of proceedings in the discernment of presumed apparitions or revelations were approved by Pope Paul VI in 1978 and distributed to the world's bishops, but never officially published or translated into modern languages.

However, over the past three decades, unauthorized translations have appeared around the world, according to Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The doctrinal office "believes it is now opportune to publish these 'Norms,' providing translations in the principle languages" so as to "aid the pastors of the Catholic Church in their difficult task of discerning presumed apparitions, revelations, messages or, more generally, extraordinary phenomena of presumed supernatural origin," the cardinal wrote.