by Frank Holmes, reporter
Every Christmas season, Americans make time to hear “scary ghost stories” about Jacob Marley and Scrooge, or watch Linus talk about angels bringing “good tidings of great joy.”
But this Christmas season, another message is on the loose — and it does not promise “peace, goodwill to men.”
343 years ago, a nun said she received a message from Satan that she wrote it down in a secret code language.
Now, a team of scientists has translated most of this spine-tingling message.
In 1645, a 15-year-old girl named Isabella Tomasi entered an Italian convent to dedicate her life to prayer and worshiping God. But soon, she began having terrifying visions.
She’d scream while she was at the altar and pass out in front of the holy place.
She said the Devil and his minions had begun appearing to her, trying to tempt her, coax her — even force her — to stop worshiping the true God.
The Benedictine sisters renamed her Sister Maria Crocifissa della Concezione and tried to keep her safe inside the holy site at Palma di Montechiaro.
But she told them it was no use: She had been possessed.
The demons continually tormented her by speaking to her… until one day, she said, Satan himself decided to speak through her.
In 1676, Sister Maria said she had a horrifying visitation from the Devil, and when she woke up she was smudged with ink all over her body.
To her surprise, she found a letter that she said the Devil had dictated and either forced her to write — or actually entered her body and wrote himself.
The message came out as a tangled code of Ancient Greek, Latin, Arabic, and the ancient Runic alphabet.
Sister Maria said the letter had an important message from the prince of darkness… but no one could make out what her invented language said, not even Maria.
So, the parchment sat for more than 300 years until scientists decided to run her hodgepodge alphabet through a code-busting program they found on the dark web… and they were shocked at what they found.
The results “show that it really is devilish,” said Daniele Abete, the director of the Ludum Science Center in Sicily.
The message, which encourages people to turn their backs on Jesus, sounds like it was written by Lucifer himself.
“God thinks he can free mortals,” her letter says, but “this system works for no one.”
It also called the Holy Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost—“dead weights.”
Not all of the letter has been decoded, but scientists are working to finally retrieve the communication that drove Sister Maria mad.
A few of the scientists say they’ve found a real plot twist: The letter may not be what it seems.
Some of the scientists say the letter’s rambling and disjointed style makes them think Sister Maria may have been disturbed to begin with.
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Sister Maria learned several languages while at the convent, and they say she may have had a mental illness that forced her to write what she believed was a demonic statement.
“I personally believe that the nun had a good command of languages, which allowed her to invent the code, and may have suffered from a condition like schizophrenia, which made her imagine dialogues with the Devil,” said Abete.
But she and her team hope they’ll eventually break the code and let the world read what Sister Maria—or a much darker figure—had to say.
And they’ve already found several people who want to use this message for their own purposes.
The possibility that the nun may have been insane “has not stopped numerous interested Satanic sects contacting me since I published our findings,” Abete said.
What is this 343-year-old letter: a Satanic communication, a secret code giving its readers the power of the Devil, or the mad ravings of a country nun in the days before psychiatric medicine?
This Christmas season, the whole world can rejoice that “the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned.”
Frank Holmes is a veteran journalist and an outspoken conservative that talks about the news that was in his weekly article, “On The Holmes Front.”