The Devil and the Nun
On the morning of the 11th August 1676, Sister Maria Crocifissa della Concezione, a 31-year-old nun from the Sicilian convent of Palma di Montechiaro, was found in her cell in some distress. She lay prostrate on the floor, her faced covered in ink, her hand clutching a strange scrap of paper, covered in peculiar symbols (reproduced above). Sister Maria revealed that The Devil had appeared to her in the night, urging her to forsake his old enemy, God, and to follow the Satanic path. To persuade Maria, Satan took over her faculties and wrote the letter with her hand.
For hundreds of years, the mysterious symbols of the letter lay uncracked. However, in 2017, Sicilian scientists used intelligence-grade code-breaking technology to decipher the epistle. Just as the nun had stated back in 1676, The Devil’s letter urged her to forsake her creator, and follow him: âHumans are responsible for the creation of God. This system works for no one. God thinks he can free mortals. Perhaps now, Styx [a river in Hades] is certain. God and Jesus are dead weights.’ Even after being cracked, the letter, with its back-story and symbolism, has all the makings of a paranormal mystery.
After all, it took over three centuries to decipher the enigma. So, did The Devil write it? This can be decided at the discretion of the reader, but there is a rational explanation. The code-breakers have suggested that Sister Maria was suffering from schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, for she was heard almost every night screaming and doing battle with Lucifer. The code, though impressive, is not beyond the capabilities of a well-educated, bilingual individual. So whichever explanation you favour, one thing is certain: Sister Maria was neither lying about seeing The Devil, nor about the message that the letter contained.