Journal of the Western Mystery Tradition
No. 19, Vol. 2. Vernal Equinox 2010
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Two Centuries of Mystery Unveiled:
CAMBRIDGE, MASS. – 3 August 2010 – Speaking from his cramped office at the local elder services agency, the Johannite rector of Boston, Rev. Donald Donato, asks: “Was Jesus initiated in Egyptian sciences and versed in Greek philosophy? Was it Peter or John who was given charge over the nascent Christian community? Is there a living esoteric tradition, passed down from the Apostles, which managed to survive the Inquisition?” “I don’t know”, Donato smiles, “but the work that I’ve done on this translation certainly sheds light where there was previously only speculation.” “It’s clear that our tradition continues as it has done over the past centuries, focused on fanning the flames of the Divine within each of us by recognizing the face of Divinity in our neighbors, colleagues, friends, families and, yes, also in our enemies.”
All of these questions are taken up in the first English translation of The Lévitikon: The Gospels According to the Primitive Church. Obscured by speculation and controversy since the 1804 French translation was released, English readers are now able to experience this unique version of the Gospel of John which claims to have been faithfully copied by the Athenian monk Nicephorus. For the Johannite Tradition, an esoteric, Gnostic Christian communion which is alive and well on three continents, these gospels are pieces of a treasured heritage that bridges the ancient and modern communities of St. John. Legendarily, the original Medieval Greek vellum manuscript of The Lévitikon was purchased by Dr. Bernard-Raymond Fabré-Palaprat, a young physician, knight of Napoleon’s elite Legion of Honor, Grand-Master of the Order of the Temple, and Patriarch of the Johannite Church of Primitive Catholic Christians.
The current Johannite Patriarch, Iohannes IV commissioned Rev. Donald Donato to undertake the translation of The Lévitikon in Strasbourg, France two years ago. A second volume, which will include more detailed information on the Johannite Tradition, is forthcoming. This 85-page work was painstakingly completed in 2010, and includes an introductory letter from the Patriarch, and an informative historical introduction by Monsignor Jordan Stratford, author of Living Gnosticism: An Ancient Way of Knowing and The DaVinci Prayer Book.
The Lévitikon: The Gospels According to the Primitive Church is available for purchase on Amazon.com or directly from it’s publisher, the Apostolic Johannite Church www.johannite.org.