The main work among Maria Valtorta’s writings has been published in ten volumes and is entitled The Gospel As It Was Revealed to Me.
It narrates the birth and childhood of Mary and her Son Jesus (largely written during the evacuation), the three years of Jesus’ public life (which constitute the bulk of the work), his passion, death, resurrection, and ascension, the beginnings of the Church, and the assumption of Mary.
On a lofty literary plane, the work describes landscapes, environments, people, and events with the vivacity of a depiction; it delineates characters and situations with introspective skill; it sets forth joys and dramas with the sentiment of someone really taking part in them; it provides information on the characteristics of surroundings, customs, rites, and cultures with unexceptionable details. Through the charming account of the Redeemer’s earthly life, with a wealth of discourse and dialogue, she illustrates the whole doctrine of Christianity in keeping with Catholic orthodoxy.
“Natural and mystical gifts harmoniously joined together,” the biblicist Fr. Gabriele M. Allegra—a Franciscan missionary who is now “venerable”—wrote in 1968, “account for this masterpiece of Italian religious literature and, perhaps I should say, of Christian literature on a worldwide scale.”
Maria Valtorta wrote this work between 1944 and 1947. Some of the final episodes correspond to 1951.
She did not always proceed according to narrative order. Sometimes, in view of contingent spiritual exigencies, she had to write one or more episodes outside the plot, and Jesus would afterward show her where they should be introduced. In spite of the sporadic discontinuity of the drafting and, above all, the lack of written or mental preparatory outlines, the work presents a perfectly organic structure from beginning to end.
In addition, Maria Valtorta interpolated pages on varied topics which she began to write in 1943 (as soon as the Autobiography was finished) and continued in later years until 1950. These have come to form the minor works, published in five volumes: three miscellaneous works entitled The Notebooks (corresponding, respectively, to 1943, 1944, and 1945-1950), which group together texts on ascetical, biblical, doctrinal, and autobiographical subjects, in addition to descriptions of Gospel scenes and the martyrdom of the early Christians; the work entitled The Book of Azariah contains commentaries on texts found in the Missal for feast days (except the Gospels); and Lessons on Paul’s Letter to the Romans.