Vatican toughens up its official filters on what passes as supernatural

The Vatican has issued tighter rules on assessing whether a strange phenomena is supernatural or not. While "miracles" like weeping statues and apparitions of Jesus and Mary, they've become more common in recent years.

The document urges bishops to carefully vet supernatural phenomena to weed out fraudsters and money-grabbers. Mishandling these cases could cause "damage to the unity of the Church." With social media spreading reports like wildfire—often fueled by rumors and fake news—these incidents have skyrocketed. The new guidelines suggest bishops should generally give a "nihil obstat" ruling, meaning the event isn't officially recognized as supernatural but worship isn't banned either. Bishops also have five other options, including outright rejecting the event or banning related worship. True supernatural recognition by the Vatican is quite rare.

For example, in 1930, the Church gave the thumbs-up to the "Our Lady of Fatima Miracle" when the Virgin Mary apparently showed herself to young children followed by the sun zigging and zagging across the sky for a good ten minutes.

Glad the Church is becoming more skeptical. Otherwise, people might start believing that someone could rise from the dead.

(BBC News via Daily Grail)

Previously: Catholic church launches probe into weeping Mary statue in Hobbs, N.M