We begin with the Notification. The Notification that came out previously was modified by the CDF through an over 2 year dialogue with Mrs. Ryden, more of which can be read here http://www.cdf-tlig.org/ Many, even Wikipedia, have excluded that a modification was ever done, but that is cleared up definitively by the recorded audience between Cardinal Ratzinger and Vassula Ryden that took place on November 22nd, 2004 http://www.cdf-tlig.org/dialogue.html when Vassula asked poignantly:
“The last question: What would the response be if someone were to call your office in order to reassure themselves on my case and they would ask: ‘Is the Notification still valid’? What would your response be?”
Cardinal Ratzinger replied:
“Well, we would say that there have been modifications in the sense that we have written to the interested bishops that one should now read the Notification in the context of your preface and with the new comments that you have made.”
So, although the CDF did not issue a new notification reversing the old one, the Vatican wants us to interpret the old notification with the clarifications that Vassula gives (the questions CDF put to her and her replies now printed at the intro of each book) so as to not misinterpret the notification and its misgivings at that time.
Recently the new prefect for the CDF issued a statement that:
1) “The Notification of 1995 remains valid as a doctrinal judgment of the writings examined”,
2) (her)…” clarifications on some problematic points in her writings and on the nature of her messages which are presented not as divine revelations, but rather as her personal meditations” and
3) “it remains inappropriate for Catholics to take part in prayer groups established by Mrs Rydén”.
This has confused a lot of people as:
1) the said modification to the Notification did, in fact occur, and can be verified and wasn’t mentioned in this new Notification. And it is important to note that Cardinal Ratzinger as then head of the CDF would not give an audience to Vassula unless the situation of the notification had been modified, which he did give. In addition, the Notification is not a judgment as in Condemned but rather a warning statement. So there never was a negative Church judgment on her writings only a warning of what at the time seemed questionable doctrinal points and moral incertitude.
2) the messages, since their origin, have been presented by Vassula and the words themselves as supernatural manifestations, and she has even undergone medical testing. Stating that, according to Vassula, these were her own meditations is unsubstantiated by any of her writings or her personal representations of any of her writings. If the CDF means that they now newly judge that these are her own meditations, whether based on her clarifications or their own study of the writings; that is not actually stated and it would be a stretch to be inferred. And what of the moral and medical evidence that is on record that the spirit of “self” in this case has been ruled out and is not possible?
3) the only valid reason to claim that Catholics who engage in the prayer groups to be inappropriate is if their were doctrinal errors, and the responses given to the CDF show there are none to be concerned about according to the modification of the notification. It was already stated in the letter to the bishops’ conferences that the prayer groups should follow the dispositions of the local bishops. This criteria, already in place prior to the Letter from Cardinal Levada makes his statement of “remaining inappropriate”, seem to come out of nowhere since it had never been mentioned before in any correspondence, official or otherwise. There has never been an official document from the Holy See that forbids ecumenical prayer meetings like that of TLIG as they are non liturgical.
Vassula is open to dialogue with the CDF regarding this recent negative statement and subsequent confusion. Please keep in mind that even the original 1995 Notification was a warning and not a judgment of condemnation.