False mystic Vassula Ryden sues critical web site

What do false mystics do, besides peddle spiritual messages and collect money from naive followers? They sue people who try to expose them.
Last March the Patriarchate of Constantinople warned against Vassula Ryden’s claims of presenting messages from Jesus. It was an impressive statement from her own church (English translation here), which should help to diminish the bad influence of this long-exposed phony, especially when it is added to the warnings from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1995, 1996, and 2007.
In March 2011 the critical web site infovassula.ch, based in Switzerland, wrote, apparently incorrectly, that the document was a formal excommunication of Ryden, and in November 2011 Vassula’s organization sued the site author, Maria Laura Pio. A hearing about some issues was held on January 6.
The impression of an excommunication is understandable, since the Patriarchate’s document stated:

we call upon the proponents of these unacceptable innovations and the supporters who maintain them, who henceforth are not admitted to ecclesiastical communion, not only to not be involved in the pastoral work of the local Holy Metropolis, but also to not preach their novel teachings, to prevent the appropriate sanctions under the Holy Canons.

Of course we are dealing with translations, so ambiguities are possible. It sounds at least as if the followers of Vassula are to be denied Holy Communion until they desist.
I wish Ms. Pio all the best in dealing with this legal harassment from the Vassula camp.


  1. Indeed the Church (Catholic Church that is) did not excommunicate Vassula, also because she is not Catholic so she falls outside the canonical jurisdiction of the Church, i.e. she is not baptized Catholic, nor a convert to Catholicism, so the Church can’t excommunicate her (excommunication is a canonical punishment, so it applies to those under the canon law of the Catholic Church)
    She’s an orthodox, so perhaps the Orthodox Church she belongs to might have excommunicated her, but I have not heard anything about that.
    The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, however, as you also pointed out, condemned her messages as ‘non authentic’ several times because of ‘grave theological errors’.
    I encountered Vassula’s writings about 10-15 yrs ago, since some people introduced me to them and indeed right away certain things she wrote were very odd to me if not down right appalling.

  2. I am not a reader of Vassula’s writings and am moderately curious about the considerable variety of opinions about her and other (apparent)mystics.
    But I would find your post here much more credible as a source of information, IF you hadn’t declined to publish Fr John Abberton’s comment in which he attempts to correct what he believes are some factual inaccuracies in your criticism.
    What does the truth have to fear?
    You can read his response here:

  3. Thanks for your note, battlements.
    That’s strange: I haven’t taken any action today to block any comment from Fr. Abberton. But since you’ve posted a link to his site, that’s just as good. Readers can see his note that way.
    He insists that the CDF didn’t issue “condemnations” of Vassula’s messages and that I posted “factually incorrect” comments.
    What’s he talking about? I said that CDF issued *warnings*.

  4. Thank you Richard. I think he may have been referring, not so much to your post, as to the first comment above, where it says:
    “The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, however, as you also pointed out, condemned her messages as ‘non authentic’ several times because of ‘grave theological errors’.”

  5. I have managed to comment using my Google account!
    With regard to Vassula, the situation in relation to the Catholic and Orthodox Churches is not simple. To begin with, the original Notification from the CDF was not issued following a formal discussion or meeting with Vassula or any representative. Cardinal Ratzinger spoke of the need for such a formal discussion in the book “The Ratzinger Report”. Just before that original Notification was issued, Fr. Michael O’Carroll (RIP)was more or less on his way to Rome with a dossier he had compiled. he never had the chance to submit it! Bishop Terra of Brazil who was then working in the Pontifical Biblical Institute (under Cardinal Ratzinger) asked the Cardinal (he was not in Rome when the Notification – unsigned – was issued) what he should do, since he and other bishops in Brazil had found the writings very helpful. He was told, “carry on as before, all is well”. This is on video at the TLIG web site. Of course, he and the others were advised to take care, to be cautious, because there were issues regarding some theological questions in the writings. The Cardinal made the same point to Dr. Neils Hvidt. However, when Vassula submitted her answers, being helped by Fr. Prospero Grech (now a Cardinal), Cardinal Ratzinger remarked, “she has done well”. It was then that she was told there would be a change and that the “position had been modified”. Cardinal Ratzinger then became Pope and his successor at the CDF appeared to have no knowledge of these developments since, in answer to queries, the phrase suggested by the former Cardinal Ratzinger was not used. Vatican departments are not infallible. As an example of this, when I was in Rome recently with Vassula and other readers of TLIG, Vassula and Bishop Toppo (of India) had a very cordial meeting with the new head of the unity office. At the same time in the piazza it was clear that we were not exactly welcome since we were not allowed to carry a banner, and the group was announced as, “The group of Peter and Paul”. We did not even know that was us! At the same time, we were told that when the Pope heard Vassula was coming to Rome he remarked, “Vassula? I know her” and this was not said with any distaste.
    With regard to the Orthodox Church, the Notification issued on the Patriarchal web site (and that is what it is) was not repeated on paper or through any other form of communication. It was unsigned and did not bear the Patriarchal seal (necessary for all formal documents). Again, with regard to the requirements of Orthodox Canon Law, there was no formal meeting with Vassula, and she has still not received any formal document regarding this matter. Attempts to meet with the Patriarch or his representatives have been ignored (no answer to any letter or email). Therefore, no dialogue has taken place. Some Orthodox bishops and priests who have been consulted on this matter have simply said, “there was no seal”. There is so much more to say, and I cannot go through the whole story on this site. I recommend people who are interested to, quite simply, read her writings and, if the opportunity arises, meet with her. At least these two things would seem to be important if a proper judgement is to be made. As for people having “bad experiences” with the Prayer groups etc, why should that be a problem? Many people can be found saying that the Catholic Church has damaged them or that they had a bad experience with Opus Dei or the Neocatechumenate. Whatever this means, it does not mean that we thereby condemn the whole thing. There are many who have the opposite experience, and in the case of True Life in God, the few who have been upset or claim to have been damaged in some way have to be weighed against the literally hundreds (at least) who are growing in the love of God and each other as a result of readings those writings, which then lead them back to the Scriptures and the Sacraments.

  6. You write, we post
    unless you state otherwise.

    Mr Cronak, you post the above on your homepage but I see my simple reminder of the link to the ONLY accurate and detailed information on the internet about the dialogue between the Vatican and Vassula is too tough for you to publish!
    Have you ANY interest in the Truth?

  7. I have an interest in keeping the comment section free from ads. You wouldn’t believe the hundreds, sometimes thousands, of attempts that come in to the blogs here daily, trying to post ad links for everything from luxury goods to dubious pills.
    Speaking of which, David, your comment contained links. It was held for review, and the system told you so. That’s part of the anti-spam system here.
    Furthermore, your comment was entered at 6:24 a.m. Eastern time. If I don’t get out of bed and approve it, you’re just going to have to be charitable, as a devotee of “true love in God” ought to be, and take it patiently.
    Let me know if this helps you calm down.
    “You write, we post…” is a reference to the Welborn/Vere Protocol: we reserve the right to publish and discuss e-mails from readers. It is not a promise to publish all comments. I’ll add an explanation of that for the newbies.

  8. Ok, well, I will try again…
    The website with an accurate and detailed account of the communications between Vassula and the CDF is at this address:
    And the other thing I mentioned was the elevation to Cardinal (in the last few days) of the priest who communicated with Vassula on behalf of the CDF. This was Fr Prospero Grech and you can read his initial letter to Vassula at this link:

  9. Please let me apologize if I have been uncharitable in assuming you had chosen not to post my item this morning. I had assumed you had decided not to include it because the item from Fr Abberton appeared after I submitted my posting.
    So, again, I apologize and thank you for allowing these ‘supportive of Vassula’ posts.

  10. Regarding the validity of the Catholic Church’s documents on Vassula Ryden, I copy hereunder the translation into English of a Warning issued last October by the Bishops of southern France, which was widely spread by the French Catholic media and figures on the website of the Diocese of Marseille (http://marseille.catholique.fr/Mise-en-garde):
    Several sources have announced that on November 2011 Mrs Vassula Ryden will be coming to Marseille. The programme mentions conferences, Mass, deliverance and healing prayers.
    The Roman Congregation for the doctrine of the faith has pronounced itself several times on her case, by emitting great reservations and not recognizing the supernatural character of her alleged messages. It advises Catholics not to support this person’s activities by participating in her initiatives.
    The Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople has recently pronounced itself in a similar way, since Mrs Vassula Ryden was a member of that Church.
    The bishops of the Province of Marseille want to bring to the attention of the catholic faithful of their dioceses that this event is in no way connected to our Church. The acts of religious nature (Mass, deliverance and healing prayers) – if they take place – will be performed outside the communion with the Catholic Church.
    In Marseille, October 22, 2011.
    + Georges PONTIER Archbishop of Marseille
    + Christophe DUFOUR Archbishop of Aix-en-Provence and Arles
    + Jean-Pierre CATTENOZ Archbishop of Avignon
    + François-Xavier LOIZEAU Bishop of Digne
    + Dominique REY Bishop of Fréjus-Toulon
    + Jean-Michel di FALCO LEANDRI Bishop of Gap and Embrun
    + Louis SANKALÉ Bishop of Nice
    + Jean BONFILS Apostolic Administrator of Ajaccio

  11. Well, this last comment (at January 16, 7:47 a.m.) is certainly to the point! My thanks to the commenter.

  12. Vassula and TLIG are at it again and this time may have potentially shut down the one-stop site for truth about the cult – http://www.infovassula.ch/tliglawsuit2.htm
    The threats are spurious – and I’ve done some more research on the people behind this. The solicitor who is threatening to sue for legal fees and loss of TLIG(TM) earnings, Anthony Jeremy, is a specialist in CANON law and a fully paid up member of the cult, having posted at length, coincidentally, about the Congregation’s ban on the use of church premises and being mentioned by someone else in a ‘testimony’.
    Vassula(TM) is a registered trademark, as is TLIG(TM), which is curious. The attack has no basis, clearly Pio’s site is not trading as TLIG, is not selling a bogus product, in fact is not selling anything and doesn’t even carry advertising! It clearly falls under ‘fair use’, otherwise it would be impossible to ever mention Vassula(TM) or TLIG(TM). Also note that nowhere on the TLIG(TM) site does it mention that these are registered trademarks and only refers to copyright on the message content. I wonder why?
    Also note that TLIG(TM) is not mentioned in full, no corporate address or full details of the company. TLIG(TM) seems not registered in the UK as a trading entity. Looking at the Foundation, we find that this is registered in Switzerland. It has one office and one employee. The president, Jan Kooger Howard, has currently 19 separate companies running from front offices around Geneva – none has more than 6 registered employees – his main interest seems to be an oil brokerage for Nigerian oil, Sahara Energy Services. And no, that does not appear to be a trademark!
    The trademarks are owned by the VP, another Swiss big businessman, Jacques Gay, one of the Freres Gay and the owner of a few watch clasp patents.

  13. The lawyer’s claims sound spurious to me too. It would be very good if some lawyer in the UK would defend Mrs. Pio from the harassment she’s getting. Alas, she, quite understandably, doesn’t want to deal with it any more. I’ll post a new blog thread about the case.

  14. I am reading the messages True Life In God. This has touched my heart in a way that I cannot understand. I have also watched all the videos of Vassula especially the one when she visited Australia. The statues with oil pouring and gold dust forming was caught on camera. It is impossible that the messages True Life In God are false. Nobody (however much they change their hand writing ) can write like this. It is truly the work of God. I do not believe for a second Vassula accepts money from people. I am sure she would accept an invitation to visit countries and travel expenses would be paid for but otherwise I do believe she is gods apostle. God did say to her she will face many obstacles. May you continue to live in Gods love Vassula.
    Please keep reading out to people. You and Emma De Guzman are the only true prophets of our time.

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