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Angel Whispering 101: The psychic movement at the center of Philly’s latest V.A. controversy

It could be called The Haunting of The Philadelphia VA. The Philadelphia regional office of the Department of Veteran’s Affairs is in the headlines again with a new kind of problem. The office, which Assistant Inspector General Linda Halliday has called “the most problematic” of all the VA’s regional offices, is now dealing with a thorn in their side they could not have seen coming: Angels. Actually, to be fair, those who whisper to angels.

They’re basically our personal spiritual staff members, according to Cecilia Brandt, the “Star Angel Whisperer” who spoke with Billy Penn after the suspensions of two members of Philadelphia’s Department of Veteran’s Affairs, Acting Manager Lucy Filipov and Pension Manager Gary Hodge.

The pair were temporarily removed from their posts Monday after a VA inspector general’s report found that they had pressured eight senior employees to come to a party at the Filipov residence, leave $35 on the kitchen table (although employees don’t remember how much they actually ended up paying), and meet with Hodge’s wife Loretta for a private “reading” from an “Angel Whisperer.”

According to the inspector’s report, many employees were disappointed with their psychic experience. The psychic held a crystal and said a “prayer” before and after the reading, according to party attendees. Loretta’s online resume describes her occupation for the last nine years as “The Angel Whisperer.” Her primary tasks are “Communicating with deceased loved ones, Spirit, intuitive counseling and messages from the Angels.” Tasks that, in 2013 and 2014, earned her more than $25,000, which went unreported and untaxed.

This angel business is fairly deep, Brandt explained Wednesday. Everyone is connected for life to at least two guardian angels and Brandt recently met a very creative kid connected to a pretty prominent soul: Walt Disney.

“He may be controversial here on earth, but he is a very deep soul,” Brandt says. “I get who I get. I don’t always know why.”

What is angel whispering?

Angel whispering is a form of clairvoyance (or as one angel whisperer calls it: clair-empathy.) It’s like fortune telling, with angels instead of a crystal ball, and falls somewhere between religion and soothsaying.  Angel whisperers are religious mediums — small-time prophets who can reference God, unicorn children, and “Archangel Michael’s blue flaming sword,” in the same thought.

During a “reading,” the angel whisperer will communicate with the subject/customer’s angels primarily through tarot cards, or “angel cards.” Although, angel whisperers contend that they do not need the cards to feel the cold chill of an “angel bump,” or play clair-audience member to an angel thought.

Most angel whisperers report having had some near-death experience or a vision of a dead loved one. They are a small group, so don’t expect to find your nearest one on Yelp. Brandt, who grew up in a family of psychics in Bethlehem, has not heard of any other angel whisperers in Pennsylvania.

Brandt says that she tries to facilitate a better relationship between the angel and the soul it is guarding. She wants customers to to be independent of her and free to have as good a relationship with the angels as she does.

“I sometimes have up to 14 angels,” she said. “Especially when I’m driving.”

All that money and a chance to get in with Disney … I wanna be an angel whisperer, too!

Well, you’ll have to enroll in Angel University first. AU, “Higher Learning at Home,” is actually a series of videos available online, en route to your Angel Therapy Practitioner® certificate. The classes range from the $900 Angel Therapy Practitioner Course to the $249 Certified Dream Interpreter Online Course, $400 Mediumship Course, and the $11 “Discovering your Spirit Animal.”

Who are the whisperers I should know about? 

The Tattooed Millennial Scotsman:

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As the story goes, Kyle Grey‘s grandmother was in the hospital with Lymphoma when one night her spirit visited 4-year-old Grey in his bedroom and began tickling his back. He woke up the next day and it was revealed to him that his grandmother had “gone to heaven.” He has been communicating with angels ever since. At 17, he was named the UK’s youngest medium. According to the 27-year-old’s website, he’ll “get you hanging out with your angels in no time.”

The Podcasting Whisperer of Illinois:

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Dr. Kelli Janson is the author of “Angels Are Always All Around You— Guide to Discovering Your Own Angels.” On her podcast, “The Angel Whisperer Radio Show” (last episode: 10 months ago) she performs readings, leads meditation and tries to get people to open their heart center by picturing their core as a light pink rose. She says the angels are God’s army.

The California Virtues: 

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Doreen and Melissa Virtue. Doreen is the founder of Angel Therapy. She has written more than 50 books with titles that range from 1990s “Chocoholic’s Dream Diet,” to “Eating In The Light” (2001) and “Thank You, Angels!” (2007). She creates her own tarot card decks and is currently in Maui giving a speech. Her publishing house, Hay House, told Billy Penn that Dorreen does not receive direct phone calls. Her daughter-in-law, Melissa, teaches classes at Angel University.

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