Joan of Arc's trial transcripts offer many insights into her fascinating life. She communicated with the dead--daily--leading the trial judges to say she was a witch. She predicted the future--accurately--on many occasions, which was confirmed by many sober witnesses who gave testimony.Read more...
Joan of Arc's trial transcripts offer many insights into her fascinating life. She communicated with the dead--daily--leading the trial judges to say she was a witch. She predicted the future--accurately--on many occasions, which was confirmed by many sober witnesses who gave testimony. She also claimed--many times--to be "the miraculous virgin" who was prophesied to save the Kingdom of France. Scholarly debate continues to this day on the source of Joan's "Voices" (the interior locutions that guided her). Some say Joan suffered from delusions, but those Voices were the source of her military success and her accurate predictions of future events.
Joan not only heard Voices, but also claimed to see visible apparitions of spiritual guides who had been dead for centuries. Claims of visual encounters with supernatural beings are easily discounted, but some recent Marian apparitions--such as Medjugorje, Kibeho, Akita, Zeitoun, Garabandal and Scottsdale--involved objectively documented events and phenomena witnessed by thousands of people.
In literature and film, Joan of Arc is often depicted as a Christ figure due to parallels involving her life, suffering and death, however, information from the trial transcripts clearly presents "Joan the Maid" ("Joan the Virgin," as she was commonly known) as an iconic representation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Joan saw herself as specially chosen by God to "drive back the King's enemies," a role that reflects a Catholic view that the Virgin Mary is Co-Redeemer with Christ in vanquishing the enemies of the King of Kings. At least fifteen Marian apparitions since 1840--documented in this book's Epilogue--point toward the climax of the "Age of Mary," when the Church officially declares a dogma recognizing Mary as Co-Redeemer.
Some of the most controversial issues surrounding Joan of Arc involve claims she was a lesbian or perhaps even a transgender person. Historians have criticized writers such as Vita Sackville-West (1892-1962) for making such claims.
Historians correctly noted that bedding was relatively scarce in the 15th century, and two women sleeping in the same bed cannot be construed as evidence of sexual intimacy. Historians also addressed claims of cross-dressing by stating the need for Joan to protect herself from sexual assault in prison as well as the need to dress in men's clothes during military operations. While both of those arguments are true, they neglect to address the evidence in its entirety, which is documented in Joan of Arc's trial transcripts.
The Epilogue in this book by Emilia P. Sanguinetti addresses the theological debate occurring today within the Catholic Church regarding its relationship with the LGBT community. Theology to support Catholic gay marriage is also addressed based on the 2005 papal encyclical "God is Love," which has an overarching theme that eros (erotic love) is perfected by agape (self-sacrificial love).
Other topics covered in the Epilogue include theories about the origin of Joan's Voices and an analysis of other claims of supernatural activity in the Catholic Church--the same types of supernatural activities that resulted in Joan of Arc being burned at the stake because "the judges found this woman superstitious, a witch, idolatrous, a conjurer of demons, blasphemous towards God and His saints, a schismatic and greatly erring in the faith of Jesus Christ."