Whoever reads the life of Anne Catherine Emmerich, and her book, will be satisfied that no fault can be found in any of these respects either with herself or with her revelations. Her book resembles in many points the writings of a great number of saints, and her life also bears the most striking similitude to theirs. To be convinced of this fact, we need but study the writings or what is related of Saints Francis of Assisi, Bernard, Bridget, Hildegard, Catherine of Genoa, Catherine of Sienna, Ignatius, John of the Cross, Teresa, and an immense number of other holy persons who are less known. So much being conceded, it is clear that in considering Sister Emmerich to have been inspired by God’s Holy Spirit, we are not ascribing more merit to her book than is allowed by the Church to all those of the same class. They are all edifying, and may serve to promote piety, which is their sole object. We must not exaggerate their importance by holding as an absolute fact that they proceed from divine inspiration, a favour so great that its existence in any particular case should not be credited save with the utmost circumspection. With regard, however, to our present publication, it may be urged that, considering the superior talents of the transcriber of Sister Emmerich’s narrations, the language and expressions which he has made use of may not always have been identical with those which she employed. We have no hesitation whatever in allowing the force of this argument. Most fully do we believe in the entire sincerity of M. Clement Brentano, because we both know and love him, and, besides, his exemplary piety and the retired life which he leads, secluded from a world in which it would depend but on himself to hold the highest place, are guarantees amply sufficient to satisfy any impartial mind of his sincerity. A poem such as he might publish, if he only pleased, would cause him to be ranked at once among the most eminent of the German poets, whereas the office which he has taken upon himself of secretary to a poor visionary has brought him nothing but contemptuous raillery. Nevertheless, we have no intention to assert that in giving the conversations and discourses of Sister Emmerich that order and coherency in which they were greatly wanting, and writing them down in his own way, he may not unwittingly have arranged, explained, and embellished them. But this would not have the effect of destroying the originality of the recital, or impugning either the sincerity of the nun, or that of the writer. About half way through an interesting fact about the relationship between Jesus, Mary and his Apostles is set forth. It is put forward that Jesus is cousin to three of His Apostles.
Anne Catherine Emmerich, Brother Hermenegild TOSF, Paperback, ISBN 10: 1501031600, ISBN 13: 9781501031601