Vassula Ryden is an attractive woman of Greek origin, with long blonde hair, who fascinates many people. She belongs to the Greek Orthodox Church and claims to receive messages from heaven. That the Roman Catholic Church at all levels warns against her activities over the world is a fact. That in the case Vassula deception has often been proved by a variety of authors is a another fact. However, this is not yet generally known. Vassula fans appear to live in a type of delusional state. Thus exclaimed a Flemish priest from Deerlijk/Kortrijk in euphoria during a discussion with me: I love Vassula! That in reality she is a medium for an evil spirit, is understood by few. (see also point 6)
2) WHO IS VASSULA?
She is known as Vassula Ryden. Ryden is the name of
her second husband. The name of
her father is nowhere mentioned; also not that of her first husband. Vassula
was born on 18/01/1942, in
The former worldly woman (tennis champion, painter, model) was converted and became an apostle of heaven. She married for the first time in November
1966 with a (possibly young) student, a Swedish Lutheran Protestant, whose name
is unknown. He had a career with the FAO.
They lived in a variety of countries in Africa and later in Asia, in
About six months after her divorce, towards the end of
1980, she remarried in June 1981 in a civil ceremony, again with a Swedish
Lutheran Protestant, named Per Ryden.
Not until five years after her conversion in 1985, did she marry her
second husband in the Church. That was
in 31/10/1990, in the Greek-Orthodox
I know that the Orthodox Church permits divorce, against the teaching of Jesus Christ in the gospel in and against the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church. But that, even according to her own church, she lived together with her second husband for nine years without an Orthodox Church marriage, even though she claimed to have received messages of Jesus since 1985, is incomprehensible. How could the real Jesus not notice that the woman to whom he gave heavenly messages was living in adultery?
3) OFFICIAL CHURCH DOCUMENTS CONCERNING VASSULA
A) 1/9/1991: Declaration from the bishop of Sion-Switzerland, Mgr. Heinrich Schwery:
1. Vassula is not a Catholic. Her initiatives are purely private and have nothing to do with any official oecumenical discussion group. To support initiatives for the promotion of unity amongst Christians, one must avoid absolutely such private initiatives, which are not recognised by her own (Orthodox) church, nor by the Catholic Bishop Conference.
2. The ecumenical attitude of Vassula Ryden is ambiguous. Real ecumenism, in which we hope and which we pursue in spite of all difficulties, can only exist if all participating churches adhere loyally to their own church. Blurring and confusion cannot lead to unity. Every Christian is necessarily a member of a particular church.
3. Vassula Ryden owes her success partly to her private revelations, which she claims are dictated directly to her by Jesus Christ. We must warn the faithful against the many dangers which result from this:
3.1 Private revelations, which are accepted by others without reservations, seriously compromise the credibility of the Church. People frequently attach more belief to these private messages than to the teachings of the Church.
3.2 Private revelations must be considered as invalid as long as the Church has not officially recognised them.
3.3 A theological assessment of the private revelations of Vassula obliges the bishop of Sion to prohibit the use of these messages as a basis for prayer, meditation or study in his diocese.
clear condemnation has not extinguished the burning enthusiasm of Vassula fans
in the least. In all possible languages
the endless messages are spread worldwide, a commercial but dubious success.
Someone who has done a lot of business with the messages of Vassula and those
from a great many other not recognised apparition sites is the Swiss André
Castella. In Stella Maris, November
2000, he writes the following
nonsense: He who claims to speak in name of God or of Our Lady
must be believed, as long as proof to the contrary has not been provided. Castella reverses the roles. (Cf. bishop of Sion, point 3.2)
The inevitable happened four years later from the
Declaration by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith [
(amongst others in the German Osservatore Romano no. 44 of 3/11/1995 and the French no. 44 of 31/10/1995, and in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis AAS 87 (1996) 956-957 in Italian).
Note: in l'Impartial of Nov/Dec 1995, p. 12-13, Pierre Picqué calls on all his readers to accept this ruling of the Roman Catholic Church. He reminds readers of the words of Melanie Calvat of La Salette: One must always obey the church. The publication decided to stop all further reports concerning Vassula
Declaration by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
Many bishops, priests, religious and lay people have sought an authoritative judgement from this Congregation on the activity of Mrs. Vassula Ryden, a Greek Orthodox residing in Switzerland, who in speech and in writing is spreading in Catholic circles throughout the world messages attributed to alleged heavenly revelations.
A calm, attentive examination of the entire question, undertaken by this Congregation in order to "test the spirits to see whether they are of God" (cf. 1 Jn 4:1), has brought out -in addition to positive aspects - a number of basic elements that must be considered negative in the light of Catholic doctrine.
In addition to pointing out the suspect nature of the ways in which these alleged revelations have occurred, it is necessary to underscore several doctrinal errors they contain.
Among other things, ambiguous language is used in speaking of the Persons of the Holy Trinity, to the point of confusing the specific names and functions of the Divine Persons. These alleged revelations predict an imminent period when the Antichrist will prevail in the Church. In millenarian style, it is prophesied that God is going to make a final glorious intervention which will initiate on earth, even before Christ's definitive coming, an era of peace and universal prosperity. Furthermore, the proximate arrival is foretold of a Church which would be a kind of pan-Christian community, contrary to Catholic doctrine.
The fact that the aforementioned errors no longer appear in Ryden's later writings is a sign that the alleged "heavenly messages" are merely the result of private meditations.
Moreover, by habitually sharing in the sacraments of the Catholic Church even though she is Greek Orthodox, Mrs. Ryden is causing considerable surprise in various circles of the Catholic Church. She appears to be putting herself above all ecclesiastical jurisdiction and every canonical norm, and in effect, is creating an ecumenical disorder that irritates many authorities, ministers and faithful of her own Church, as she puts herself outside the ecclesiastical discipline of the latter.
Given the negative effect of Vassula Ryden's activities, despite some positive aspects, this Congregation requests the intervention of the Bishops so that their faithful may be suitably informed and that no opportunity may be provided in their Dioceses for the dissemination of her ideas. Lastly, the Congregation invites all the faithful not to regard Mrs. Vassula Ryden's writings and speeches as supernatural and to preserve the purity of the faith that the Lord has entrusted to the Church.
Note: On 25/10/95 Vassula receives from her Jesus the following message: Today, as you see, you have been sold out by your own people. You were handed over to the Romans, through one of your own, “to be condemned and to be crucified.” You self, Vassula, keep my silence. You have sufficient witnesses to defend yourself. They will remain faithful. In the meantime, while your persecutors rejoice, my seventh angel shall pour out his chalice into the air and cause everything to catch fire…Till now they have been unable to believe that this message comes from Me.
Klos, SSS, president of Vox
(inter alia, this appeared in the
official organ of the press office of the
Official Declaration from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
Cardinal Ratzinger repeats the warning against Vassula Ryden. The Congregation clarifies the rules regarding supposed supernatural revelations. The following communication was released on 29 November 1996:
NOTIFICATION ON VASSULA RYDEN (Dec 1996)
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
I. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has received various questions about the value and authority of its Notification of 6 October 1995, published in L'Osservatore Romano on Monday/Tuesday, 23/24 October 1995, p. 2 (L'Osservatore Romano English edition, 25 October 1995, p. 12), regarding the writings and messages of Mrs. Vassula Ryden attributed to alleged revelations and disseminated in Catholic circles throughout the world.
In this regard, the Congregation wishes to state:
1) The Notification addressed to the Pastors and faithful of the Catholic Church retains all its force. It was approved by the competent authorities and will be published in Acta Apostolicae Sedis, the official organ of the Holy See, with the signatures of the Prefect and the Secretary of the Congregation.
the reports circulated by some news media concerning a restrictive
interpretation of this Notification, given by His Eminence the
Cardinal Prefect in a private conversation with a group of people to whom he
granted an audience in
a) as he said, the faithful are not to regard the messages of Vassula Ryden as divine revelations, but only as her personal meditations;
b) these meditations, as the Notification explained, include, along with positive aspects, elements that are negative in the light of Catholic doctrine;
c) therefore, Pastors and the faithful are asked to exercise serious spiritual discernment in this matter and to preserve the purity of the faith, morals and spiritual life, by not relying on alleged revelations but by following the revealed Word of God and the directives of the Church's Magisterium.
II. Regarding the circulation of texts of alleged private revelations, the Congregation states:
1) The interpretation given by some individuals to a Decision approved by Paul VI on 14 October 1966 and promulgated on 15 November of that year, in virtue of which writings and messages resulting from alleged revelations could be freely circulated in the Church, is absolutely groundless. This decision actually referred to the "Abolition of the Index of Forbidden Books", and determined that - after the relevant censures were lifted – the moral obligation still remained of not circulating or reading those writings which endanger faith and morals.
2) It should be recalled however that with regard to the circulation of texts of alleged private revelations, canon 823 §1 of the current Code remains in force: "the Pastors of the Church have the right to demand that writings to be published by the Christian faithful which touch upon faith or morals be submitted to their judgement".
3) Alleged supernatural revelations and writings concerning them are submitted in first instance to the judgement of the diocesan Bishop, and, in particular cases, to the judgement of the Episcopal Conference and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
The notification was subsequently published in Acta Apostolicae Sedis [Acts of the Apostolic See] - AAS, vol. LXXXVIII, N. 12 (5 December 1996), 956-957.]
Taken from: L'Osservatore Romano, Weekly Edition in English, 4 December 1996
4) Are all religions equal?
In Dominus Jesus, an official document from the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the
Faith, approved by Pope John Paul II on 6/8/2000, the Catholic dogma is clearly restated
that the objective salvation of all souls can only be found in the faith of the
One, Holy and
Cardinal Ratzinger, and the then Pope warn expressly against religious relativism and indifference, in particular the proposition that one religion is as good as another. In direct contradiction with this ancient teaching of the Church are the supposed messages to Vassula and those of the Franciscan Gospa to the seers in Medjugorje: All religions are equal!
A noteworthy observation, Vassula and Medjugorje as opponents of the Pope and the Church, just as the theologians Kung and Drewermann, who also attack Dominus Jesus. Nevertheless Vassula herself says (via her Jesus) that we should obey the Pope blindly, because disobedience does not come from God but from Satan.
The Papal document states: The only
Note: That the
Holy Father was handed a book of Vassula, from Niels
Christian Hvidt from
5) Vassula’s Conferences
In the newsletter True life in God of April 2000, I
read that Vassula’s messages are already sold in 35
languages and that she has to date given 600 conferences in 54 countries. Vassula spoke in
On 11/2/1995 Vassula spoke in Beaurang,
in the presence of the bishop of Namen, Monseigneur
Leonard, who thereby went against Canon 827 par.4, which forbids the
dissemination of non recognised writings over the faith in Catholic churches.
In 1995 Vassula also spoke in the St Vitus church in
6) NEW AGE – VIBRATIONS- AUTOMATIC WRITING – EVIL SPIRIT
In new-age literature, an evil spirit (eg Lazaris) often announces himself to the medium via vibrations. Now, the same happens with Vassula. She describes vibrations through her whole body. Her hand begins to shake. The evil spirit Daniel (whom she confuses with her guardian angel) in this way begins in November 1985 to write her messages. Vassula self loses all control. She becomes an instrument without a will. In the third French language book, La vraie vie en Dieu(True life in God), page 220, Jesus says: I remove from you the power to control your hand. In the fourth book, page 114, the same Jesus says: I will never limit a man’s freedom...
In the messages of Vassula, one can find all the elements of New Age language: light – peace and love – the divinity of man, knowledge – vibrations – initiation – electrical sensations – mysteries, the end of the age of the Fish – the New Age – occultism –spiritism – esotericism – channelling – universal consciousness – WE – fusions… Many believers are critical over verses in the Bible. However, they believe 100 % in the occultism derived texts of Vassula, written under the influence of an evil spirit.
Even the graphologist Meunier considers Vassula to be a medium, who is in contact with unknown powers. Vassula is also a typical example of channelling, derived from spiritism. Through mystification she manipulates the ignorance of readers, which leads to collective deception. Implicated in her worldwide success is (again) René Laurentin, who launched her by writing the foreword of her book, without even carefully reading it and after only one interview.
7) Incorrect messages
In the Warning of 6/10/1995 by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, there was already mention of doctrinal errors in the divine messages of Vassula, which no longer occurred in her later writings. Vassula repaired all sorts of mistakes in a remarkable manner. Certain words were changed, passages were left out, unfulfilled prophecies were designated as purely symbolic. And the naïve fans swallowed all this nonsense. The real Jesus (Son of God) does not say such stupidities.
Father Filip Pavic made all these
manipulations known. In April 1991,
while working in Medjugorje, this Franciscan, who was born in 1930 in the
United States of Croatian parents, met a young Australian, Kim Davison, who
delivered him a manuscript for a book from
Kim was in Medjugorje to also convert Father Pavic to Vassula’s messages. He left the original manuscript with Father Pavic. In 1991 Kim discovered the conspiracy and deception of Schlacher and Vassula. They had in fact falsified the original texts, before these had appeared in book form. In September 1991 Kim took the corrected texts, written in Jesus handwriting to Pavic in Medjugorje. Many words and sentences were crossed out in red ink and/or rewritten in Jesus’ handwriting through…..Erwin Schlacher. Herewith a falsification of a text addressed to the Pope:
“O come Peter, take my hand, Satan has
digressed you from the Truth" were
changed to: "Satan has digressed many
of you from the Truth! Take my hand
In the same way, inter alia, the following text also disappeared: The souls in purgatory can be saved from Satan’s(!) claws through prayer(!). But the souls in Purgatory have of course already been saved from Satan’s claws!
When Fr Pavic observed that the well known Medjugorje promoters also defended the counterfeits, he sent copies of these manipulative practices over the whole world.
In 1993 Rainaldo Pinheiro published these
Vassula forgot to mention however, that the divine rewriting occurred in the handwriting of Erwin Schlacher. Other divine interventions were those of Vassula’s first spiritual leader, Father James Fennan. He advised her to change the word worship of Maria to venerate.
12/10/1986 Vassula received the following message from the Eternal Father: For every word where you “feel” that it is
not correct or confuses you, you may consider yourself free to correct it. I, God, give you that feeling. In this way was, with God’s permission
the word Hades (kingdom of the dead) later replaced by purgatory. Another recent example is as follows: On 10/5/1995 Vassula let the whole world know
that the three and a half year of the Antichrist had already commenced. Thus they would run till 1998. Also according to Father Gobbi
(friend or foe?) the Antichrist should appear in the year 1998 (3 x 666). Father
James Fennan tried to save face (Newsletter True life
in God, April 1999) with the stupid explanation that everything had happened
invisibly. Thank God, he writes, the
dominion of the Antichrist is over.
Hurrah, we are now in the age of peace, which follows that of the
Antichrist. What than with the blood baths in
8) COLLABORATION with other false seers.
It is remarkable to observe how many false seers support each other and form a sort of network, always assisted by the same priests.
A. Medjugorje: Already in the
summer of 1989 Vassula is noticed in Medjugorje. In 1993 Father Michael O’ Carroll made a list
of supporters of Vassula. Amongst them
one finds the Medjugorje fans: René Laurentin, Frane Franiç, Hnilica, Father
Edward O’Connor, Robert Faricy, Don Gobbi. At the
opening of the Medjugorje conference in the pro-Cathedral of
The same Medjugorje message: You divide the Church; not I, is later repeated by Vassula. She also speaks over the day of the festival, as also in Medjugorje). In True Life in God, volume II, page 122. her Jesus talks about the blessings he has given, via his mother in Medjugorje.
B Garabandal: On 24/3/ 1989 Vassula herself went to Garabandal, an apparition site in north western Spain, which, just as Medjugorje has been judged by the Roman Catholic Church, as being not supernatural. About the many similarities between Vassula and Medjugorje, some examples: embracing of crucifixes, rings, rosaries. In both cases is mention made of Padre Pio (a sort of Godfather) In book II of Vassula, Garabandal is mentioned at least 10 times:
– On 5/9/1987 the demon (evil spirit) says to Vassula: Write the word Garabandal; the apparitions there are authentic…I have manifested myself to you to remove all doubt regarding Garabandal.
On 1/12/1987 Jesus says: The souls of priests are my thorns. They have refused to spread the messages from
my mother in Garabandal. Accept the
truth. Garabandal is the continuation of
– On 4/12/1987 Our Lady says: My beloved daughter, hallow Garabandal. I have appeared at Garabandal.
Vassula met Conchita, at a Marial
Congress in the
C Don Gobbi: With the Marial Movement of Priests of the Italian priest Don Gobbi, Vassula has a hate-love relationship. On 15/6/1991 Don Gobbi declared that Vassula had her place in the Church and that she would go forward in the way God would show her. However, in the international cenacle of the Movement on June 1993 in Valdragone/San Marino, theologian Fr Ivan Pojavnic discusses false prophets: Of one hundred visionaries, ninety are false.
Vassula as well as Kurescek in his own
In addition Jesus is sometimes addressed as Father and sometimes as the Holy Trinity. Later Don Gobbi is supposed to have reconciled with Vassula. Nevertheless he stated that the Marian Movement of Priests should not be supported by other charisms. Remarkable! Who did send me (Mark Waterinckx) to Medjugorje in 1982? Don Gobbi himself!
D Milingo: In The True Life in God of December 1998, page 4, there is a good photo
of Vassula, between… Milingo and René Laurentin, taken on 18/9/1998
in the Italian Cattolica near
Note: Vassula names herself a good friend of Myrna
Nassour, a stigmatised visionary in
9) Publications against Vassula
search all things, said
1. Daria Klanac: Un ouvrage du Nouvel Age – Une Recherche sur les Ecrits de “La Vrai Vie en Dieu” de Vassula Ryden, 54 pages with ten references. Address (in 1992) Daria Klanaç, 7350 Mount Street, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, H3R 3A7.This is a thorough work, in sixteen chapters, with all the references to the correct pages in the many books of Vassula. Daria Klanac is a known Medjugorje fan. 2. Joachim Bouflet: Faussaires de Dieu, 728 pages, with 18 references to Vassula. Editions Presses de la Renaissance, 12, Avenue d’Italie, F-75013 Paris, France
(ISBN 2.85616.697.0) This encyclopaedia contains over three hundred false apparitions in the two thousand year Church history.
3) Reverend Brian Harrison O.S.: two very good articles, respectively Vassula and her heavenly handwriting, in Fidelity, May 1992. pages 33 – 42, and Vassula edits Jesus, in Fidelity, May 1994, pages 29 – 43, periodicals published by Michael Jones, see the following point.
Jones: The Medjugorje deception, 385 pages,
with 9 passages about Vassula. Fidelity Press,
Michael Jones: Der
Medjugorje-Betrug, 567 pages, German, improved
translation of 4. Verax Verlag,
Le phénomène Vassula,
7. Bishop Schwery
of Sion –
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith,
9. Katholiek Nieuwsblad: very good articles over Vassula, amongst others on 1/9/1995, 3/11/1995 en 6/12/1996
Professor Ingeborg Blümel,
In addition there are many non published private studies over Vassula.
interesting brochure is Het Paradijs, (
In 1995 the publishing house De Korenwolf, postbus 6707, NL-6075 ZG Herkenbosch, issued a scientific booklet (124 pages) over Wenende Madonna’s. (Crying Madonnas) It placed the deception of the Crying Madonna of Brunssum in a wider context of Paranormal phenomena.
In 1988 Martie Dieperink issued New Age en Christelijk Geloof (New Age and Christian Faith, 121 pages).through the publishing house Uitgeverij Kok - Voorhoeve, in Kampen (NL) Many articles written by her can be found in a variety of periodicals.
Vassula is a medium, someone who is in touch with an evil spirit (demon) who dictates so called messages to her, in the New Age style. Her Jesus talks about a united church, in much the same way as Freemasonry does.
What will you choose - the farcical unity of Vassula, who refuses to obey the Roman Catholic Church, or the Church founded by Christ and entrusted to St Peter?
Mark Waterinckx -
(English translation of originally Dutch article in newsletter AVE, December 2001)