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December 29, 2007

The Power of Christ Compels You UPDATED

Pope Benedict has given orders that bishops are to train exorcists to help combat the rise of Satanism. This is old news, at least in my home diocese which always keeps a trained exorcist on staff.

The initiative was revealed by 82-year-old Father Gabriele Amorth, the Vatican "exorcistinchief," to the online Catholic news service Petrus.

"Thanks be to God, we have a Pope who has decided to fight the Devil head-on," he said.

"Too many bishops are not taking this seriously and are not delegating their priests in the fight against the Devil. You have to hunt high and low for a properly trained exorcist.

Tell me about it.

I worked for a Catholic church from high school through college. In my first week I got a call that started like this: "This is going to sound strange, but I'm totally serious. Can you send someone over for an exorcism?" He then proceeded to explain that things were moving on their own and the house was making sounds and that it had been going on for a few weeks. He was nominally Lutheran, but they wouldn't do anything about it. Heh. We didn't either.

P.S. I just noticed some unintentional (?) humor in the Daily Mail URL to this story. it ends with "Satan=Santa." Hmmmm.

More: I meant to add this as part of the post earlier, but got distracted by my 13-month-old niece, who I'm visiting in Virginia.

The Vatican is particularly concerned that young people are being exposed to the influence of Satanic sects through rock music and the Internet.

UPDATE: Via the lovely moron RightwingSparkle, the Vatican denies that it is ordering an increase in exorcists:

"Pope Benedict XVI has no intention of ordering local bishops to bring in garrisons of exorcists to fight demonic possession,'' Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told reporters in Rome Friday.

On Thursday, the Roman Catholic Web site Petrus said the pope planned to install more exorcists in every diocese next year and reintroduce a prayer during mass to St. Michael the Archangel, believed to be the prime protector against evil, The Telegraph in Britain reported Saturday.


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posted by Gabriel Malor at 03:11 PM

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