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Discernment of Private Revelation

Claims of Private Revelation: True or False?
An evaluation of the claimed messages and apparitions to Stanley Villavicencio
of Cebu, Philippines

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Stanley Villavicencio claims to have received 33 or 34 dreams (the number varies on different websites) in which Jesus appeared to him.
Information on his claimed private revelation is found here:

Msgr. Cris Garcia is Stanley's spiritual director; he reads and approves of all of Stanley's messages. However, Msgr. Garcia claims to receive his own private revelations, in the form of internal locutions about Stanley. So his approval for Stanley's messages is not at all detached or objective, his approval is based on the locutions that he himself claims to receive. The alleged messages to Stanley are approved by Msgr. Garcia when the latter receives a claimed private revelation about the former. In other words, one claimed private revelation is based on another claimed private revelation. This type of approval is meaningless. The locutions to Msgr. Cris Garcia have not been established as true, so his approval of Stanley's claimed messages on that basis carries no weight.

How was Msgr. Cris Garcia chosen as the spiritual director of Stanley Villavicencio? Stanley received a dream telling him to choose Msgr. Garcia as his spiritual director. So if the claimed private revelation to Stanley is from fallen angels, then the choice of Msgr. Garcia was made by them so that one person who is also influenced by fallen angels might be supported by another person under the same influence.

In the first ten dreams, there were no messages; he merely saw Jesus. In the ninth, he claims that Jesus blessed him. He supposes that this blessing subsequently caused him to have a safe boat trip. In the tenth dream, he was shown various nations and peoples in the world. There is not much that can be said about these first 10 dreams. Merely seeing Jesus and some images of the world in a dream is not really a private revelation at all, since nothing is revealed. And the fact that he had a safe trip does not prove that the ninth dream was supernatural.

In the 11th 'dream', Stanley was awake and praying, but was beginning to fall asleep. He heard a voice say: 'Am I not worthy of respect?' This event is perhaps best described as a locution, since he was awake at the time. But it seems unlikely that Jesus would speak to someone, in a supernatural way, merely to express being offended by the fact that Stanley was starting to fall asleep while praying at about 3 a.m. Jesus is only offended by sin. He is not prideful and so He would not be offended by someone who was sleepy while praying at such an early hour.

Emphasis on Satan

In the 12th dream, Jesus supposedly says: "Please do not let Satan disintegrate your team."

False private revelations tend to contain many references to Satan; this is because most false private revelations are from fallen angels, and so they exaggerate the threat which they themselves pose. Out of 34 claimed private revelations, the first 10 have no messages. So we are left with 24 messages, of which 5 refer to Satan. So about 20% (one fifth) of the messages refer to Satan. Only 3 messages refer to the Virgin Mary, and none of these refer to her by name. None of the messages name the Holy Spirit or refer to the Trinity. Only one message refers to the Father. The name of Satan is mentioned in these messages more than the Virgin Mary, or the Holy Spirit, or the Father, or the Trinity. A true private revelation would only occasionally mention Satan.

Eschatological Errors

In the 12th dream, the entire message also says: "My son, you will witness My Final Coming."

The claim that Stanley will witness Jesus' Final Coming implies that now is the time of the last part of the tribulation and of the Antichrist, since Sacred Scripture and the Saints and the Catechism of the Catholic Church (n. 675) all teach that the Antichrist must arrive before the return of Jesus. This type of claim, that Jesus is returning for this generation, is found only in false private revelations, never in true private revelations. See the following article for an explanation as to why now cannot be the time of the Antichrist, the time just before the Return of Jesus. The Antichrist is Not in the World Today

The message of dream 17 says: "the days of the earth is so short now, so the duration of this devotion will soon come to end."

The devotion which supposedly will end soon is the devotion of the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Again, this implies the false claim that the very end is near. But it also implies that there is no recited prayer after Jesus returns. The Church have never taught that recited prayer will end. Since Jesus taught us to pray, it is absurd to claim that He will end recited prayer, or any other true type of prayer, at His Return.

When the Virgin Mary appears in true private revelations, she prays the Rosary, even though she is in Heaven and has the Beatific Vision of God. After the general Resurrection, the resurrected just still have the Beatific Vision, and they have bodies, so there is no reason to think, even at that time, that they would not also still pray recited prayers such as the Rosary and the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Therefore, this message of claimed private revelation contains two false claims, that now is the time of the end, and that devotion to recited prayers ends.

Worldly Language

False private revelation is often marked by worldly expressions, faulty grammar, and poorly-worded or oddly-worded sentences. These messages are no exception. In the messages of any true private revelation, Jesus and Mary both speak in a heavenly manner. But this claimed private revelation portrays Jesus as saying things like: "Congratulations!" "I am so happy and satisfied, keep up," "not in a flash," "The thrust of this convention," "this is My own personal crusade," "wreak havoc," "disintegrate your team," "It is just an acid test," and "I will run that convention personally." Jesus is God, and so he never speaks in such a worldly and odd manner, but only and always in a heavenly manner; this is true throughout the four Gospels, and it remains true in every true private revelation. Therefore, claimed private revelations with worldly language are false claims of private revelation.

Also, the message of dream 26 compares sins to the stars in the sky. But in Sacred Scripture, the stars in the sky is used to signify good things, such as the number of the spiritual descendents of Abraham, and the crown on the head of the Virgin Mary. Since stars are sources of light, they are not fittingly used as figures for sin.

Promotion of the Divine Mercy Chaplet

All private revelations, those that are true and those that are false, contain some exhortations to holiness, such as exhorting people to attend Mass, to go to Confession, to pray the Rosary, to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, to say various other prayers, etc. The false private revelations include such exhortations in order to deceive people into thinking that their messages are from Heaven. So when a set of messages, such as those to Stanley Villavicencio, contain an exhortation to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, this is not proof that the claimed private revelation is actually from Jesus or Mary or Heaven at all. Many false private revelations use the promotion of some holy and true devotion in order to deceive people into accepting the various errors found in their messages, and into following a false visionary.

Doctrinal Errors on Forgiveness and Salvation

The messages to Stanley contain serious doctrinal errors, which Stanley claims were spoken to him by Jesus.
Stanley: "I asked the Lord, 'What are the sins that You cannot forgive?' Jesus said, 'All sins can be forgiven except if you refuse to believe that your sin can be forgiven.' That is the sin He cannot forgive, because Jesus said by refusing His mercy you are also refusing to believe that He is a God."
The answer supposedly given by Jesus is a doctrinal error. The Church teaches that all sins can be forgiven without exception: "bishops and priests, by virtue of the sacrament of Holy Orders, have the power to forgive all sins" (CCC, n. 1461). The Church does not teach that the refusal to believe that your sins can be forgiven is a sin that cannot be forgiven. Repentance from any sin is possible by grace, and forgiveness of any repentant sin is available through the Sacrament of Confession. All sins can be forgiven in this life; truly, the only unforgivable sin is final impenitence, because after death actual mortal sins cannot be forgiven.
message 27 (or 28 on some websites) "Only God can change a person and only prayers can move God. So, multiply your prayers for the sinners, because the sinners do not pray for themselves anymore. And if you stop praying for them, it is as if you are throwing them to fire. But if you continue praying for that person before that person dies, he will go back to the Lord....before that person dies, he will go back to the Lord."
To the contrary, God offers salvation to all persons, and His grace is available to all persons, even if we are not praying for them. Of course, we should pray for family members and for all sinners. But it is not true that if you keep praying for someone, they will necessarily return to Jesus before they die. God gave free will to each person; your prayers cannot deprive anyone of free will. Some persons for whom we all pray will not be saved, because they have free will. Other persons for whom we might neglect to pray, certainly can still be saved. The error here is to treat our prayers as if they were a source of salvation. Christ on the Cross is the source of salvation, and He offers salvation to all. By free will, we can accept or reject that salvation. Our prayers assist Christ in His work of salvation, but the answer above makes the serious error of treating prayer as if it determined who was saved.

Doctrinal Error on Mercy and Sin

In a talk about his claimed private revelation, Stanley Villavicencio said:
Stanley: "So, when I have a chance to talk with Jesus, I ask the Lord, 'My Lord, my God, why me? I am a sinner. I am a sinful man.' And Jesus answered, 'You cannot appreciate the beauty of My mercy unless you experience the misery of sin.' "
Jesus would never make such a statement, because it is contrary to the teaching of the Catholic Faith. The created person who most appreciates the beauty of Jesus' mercy is the Blessed Virgin Mary. Yet she never sinned at all. The claim that a person can only appreciate the beauty of the mercy of God after they experience the misery of sin is false because it makes God's mercy depend on sin, rather than on grace. The only way to appreciate the beauty of the mercy of God is to cooperate with grace. The Virgin Mary appreciates God's mercy more than any other created person because she cooperated with grace more than any other created person.

False Signs and Wonders

It is common for various signs and wonders and apparent miracles to occur in association with false private revelations. Generally speaking, the messages and signs and apparent miracles associated with a false private revelation are from fallen angels. For example, there is a false private revelation in Naju, South Korea, to a woman named Julia Kim (Julia Youn); these claimed private revelations have been condemned by the Bishop of that diocese. In his declaration on the subject, he states that the various signs and wonders surrounding her apparition are perhaps preternatural in origin (the term preternatural refers to angels). Of course, since he is condemning these claimed apparitions, he must be using the term 'preternatural' to refer to fallen angels, not to holy angels.
Stanley: "After that, this image becomes a miraculous image, because there are so many instant healings and also sometimes when I give my testimony, people see lights. Lights coming out from His body. That is why there are some ripples in His body (of the image). The light has a heat and the heat destroyed the plastic. Because so many people will say Jesus is emanating lights and sometimes they say that Jesus gets out from the frame, and He will transfer right behind me and they say He is taller than me. And they said each time Jesus gets out from the frame, the frame is empty."
A true miracle from God would not 'destroy the plastic' from an image of Jesus in His Divine Mercy, nor would a true miracle cause distortions in a holy image ('ripples in His body'). Signs such as lights and images, and the manipulation of material object, are within the capability of angels to effect by their preternatural power (the natural power of angels).

Exaltation of the Visionary

Of the 34 dreams/visions that Stanley claims to have received, 10 had no messages at all (just images of Jesus), leaving 24 claimed private revelations with messages. Most of these 24 messages refer to Stanley repeatedly, praising him again and again. By comparison, true private revelations rarely mention the visionary at all. The messages of any true private revelation are conveyed from Heaven to the world by a visionary, but his or her role is, in a sense, to be transparent, to be merely a messenger. But when the messages are mostly about exalting the messenger, this is a clear indication of false private revelation.

message 23: "after this your happiness will be for eternity"

The above message claims that Stanley will certainly be saved, as if there were no possibility that he could sin seriously and end up in Hell. This type of promise is not typical of true private revelations, which are about God speaking to the Church and the world. This assertion, in a claimed message from Jesus, has the effect of exalting the claimed visionary, making it seem as if he must be very holy, since Jesus (supposedly) is publicly telling everyone that his salvation is certain.

message 33: "You are the walking icon of God's mercy for the world."

Again, the message is about exalting the messenger. No Saint has ever been called 'a walking icon.' Only certain images of veneration, used in the context of the worship of God, are called icons in the Catholic faith. No mere weak and mortal sinner is an icon. This claim that Stanley is a walking icon is an extreme exaltation of the visionary and a doctrinal error. Now this visionary presents himself as if he were a humble and simple man. But the messages nevertheless exalt him, and this is typical of the type of false messages given by fallen angels.


In my humble and pious opinion as a faithful Roman Catholic theologian, the messages and claimed private revelations to Stanley Villavicencio are not true private revelations from Heaven, but are false private revelations (probably from fallen angels). The above examples and explanations should be sufficient to show that these messages contain serious doctrinal errors, worldly language, an excessive focus on Satan, and an exaltation of the claimed visionary, all of which is incompatible with the claim that these messages are from Jesus. Remember the warning that Jesus gave about false prophets in the Gospels:

{7:15} Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

{24:11} And many false prophets will arise, and they will lead many astray.

{24:24} For there will arise false Christs and false prophets. And they will produce great signs and wonders, so much so as to lead into error even the elect (if this could be).
{24:25} Behold, I have warned you beforehand.

Please heed the warning of Jesus, and do not believe in any messages or claimed private revelations which contradict the teaching of the Catholic Faith.

by Ronald L. Conte Jr.
March 29, 2010

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