Response to Vassula’s detractors
So writes Rene Laurentin in his book “When God gives a Sign”, a response to objections made against Vassula. Copied below are two extracts from the book which deal with two of the most commonly repeated objections.
(For details of the book and sources of supply click here)
Vassula’s marriage status
“She is divorced and remarried. That seems to be the biggest problem. In fact, her marital status today is perfectly in order. She was married in church to a Protestant (1966) at a time when she was not practicing any religion. After a civil divorce (1980) she was remarried on June 13, 1981. She thought, at the time, that it was a Protestant ceremony according to her husband’s religion, but, in fact, it was a civil marriage. Only a nominal Christian, without contact with her Orthodox Church, she did not even know that her remarriage could be the source of problems. When she presented herself to her church to regularize her marriage, the first priest to whom she spoke could not even seem to feel that there was a problem since it was a mixed marriage. But she insisted, in order to be truly in accord with Orthodox legislation. It was then that she was referred to the priest in charge of marriage problems, and it was he who took care of the matter following the ‘law of economy’ that deals with broken marriages in her church.
“The marriage was celebrated on October 13,1990, in the Greek Orthodox Church of Lausanne. Thus, according to church law her situation presents no problems.”
Note also, Vassula was questioned by the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith on this very matter. See her response to question number two in the article entitled Dialogue with the CDF.
“The most serious attacks concern the Trinity. On reading them, I was impressed. Could I have badly read Vassula, I asked myself? The ambiguities that exist in all prophetic, poetic, or mystical texts; even biblical, would they be demeaned by assumed errors? I lost much time trying to find incriminating phrases. They appeared entirely different in their context, stripped of the distortions and the changed nature to which the passion of the heresy seekers had submitted them.
“The most reputed theologian among Vassula’s adversaries thought he had found in her the ancient heresy called “patripassianisme” of Noet, Epigone, Cleomene and Praxas, for whom the Father is himself incarnated and suffered the Passion; because to them, he only had one person, no Trinity.
“In the original manuscript, of which the edition has erased the references to render more difficult control over the accusations, the author gives four references to the original English text according to the first Edition. NB10:18+ (in his dactylographic text, Vassula’s adversary always cites the first English edition: the offset reproduction of the manuscript – not the second, nor the typographical); NB18:10+; NB54:29+; NB48:38+.
On April 7,1987, it is not the Father who is speaking, which is, moreover, very rare for Vassula. It is Jesus, as she and her readers have always recognized him and as the context indicates. NB10:18
That which has led the author to confusion is that sometimes Vassula calls Jesus “Father”, according to a title given to the King Messiah by Isaiah 9:10 (9:6). And if he is our brother as a man, he is Father as God; Author of our very existence. Thus he calls his disciples, “My little children” (John 13:33). Vassula saw this filial relationship at the same time as being brotherly and spousal. These diverse facets are very well articulated for this married woman, who does not confuse the human plan with the mystical. Happily, because if she used the language of the Song of Songs: “Let him not kiss me with the kisses of his mouth”(Sg1:3), or even of certain mystics, celebrating their spousal marriage with Jesus, she would receive a terrible avalanche of criticism. By the simple fact that she uses the verb to “feel” to signify the love she owes Christ or that Christ has for us, her fault finder accuses her of sentimentalism and eroticism quite displaced in its sexual overtones. However, Vassula is without ambiguity. If Jesus kisses her, it is on the forehead, like a father. Everything is as it should be, in the realm of opinion as in the realm of theology. Christianity has never endowed with guilt, neither the heart nor feelings.
In the second incriminating passage:
November 8,1987, the heavenly interlocutor says; “My Cross is on you, bear It with love, My Cross is the door to true tife, embrace It willingly. Abnegation and suffering lead into a divine path.” NB18:10
It is Jesus who speaks, and it is clear, since he says in the first Me: “Me,(Moi) your Jesus.” Then why attribute it to the Father, why lance Vassula with the poison arrow of Patripassianism?
In the third incriminating passage it is Jesus who speaks of his cross and the context is most clear. It is Jesus alone who speaks on that particular day, for the duration of several pages. NB54:15+
That which has permitted the inquisitor to find the heresy that he is looking for, is that in the preceding lines where Jesus echoes Jn 12:23-25, he calls to mind the moment where he announced the imminent arrival of his “hour” (Jn l2:23); and where the voice of the Father had just glorified him (12:24-25). But it is He who calls forth from the passage the voice of the Father, and not the Father who speaks in all the pages.
The accuser believed he had found the erroneous attribution of the Passion to the Father in a fourth passage. In fact, in this passage, Vassula hears successively the voice of the Father; who alone says: “My child”; then that of the Son: “penetrate my wounds, eat my Body and drink my Blood…” NB48:38
Quotation marks, asterisks and a manuscript note at the bottom of the page indicate the change of interlocutor:
“Now, it is the Son who speaks” says the note.
The theologian, who read too quickly, attributes to the Father that which the Son says. He has, no doubt, the excuse of working on the handwritten text, worried about exactness. But after that he would have had to give attention to the least details to not distort the text.”