Ivory Coast: bishops warn against messages, allegedly from Virgin Mary, predicting catastrophe
March 23, 2015
The Catholic bishops of the Ivory Coast have warned the faithful not to place any confidence in email and text messages that claim to be instructions from the Virgin Mary.
Reacting to a rash of messages that have predicted a great tragedy, following by a “victory of God,” the bishops said that the messages had no claim to authenticity. In fact, they said, “the content of most of these messages is contrary to the spirit of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Saying that these messages are designed to instill fear, the bishops encouraged their people not to be “troubled or frightened.” Especially during Lent, they said, Christians should shun temptations and concentrate on prayer, penance, and improving their own spiritual lives.
The bishops reminded Catholics that they should exercise prudence and restraint in reacting to unproven messages, and recognize the role of the hierarchy in discerning the authenticity of claims to special spiritual insights.
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