Paging Max Von Sydow…

Catholic bishops: More exorcists needed

NEW YORK — Citing a shortage of priests who can perform the rite, the nation’s Roman Catholic bishops are sponsoring a conference on how to conduct exorcisms.

The two-day training, starting Friday in Baltimore, is to outline the scriptural basis of evil, instruct clergy on evaluating whether a person is truly possessed, and review the prayers and rituals that comprise an exorcism. Among the speakers will be Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, archbishop of Galveston-Houston, Texas, and a priest-assistant to New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan.

“Learning the liturgical rite is not difficult,” DiNardo said in a phone interview. “The problem is the discernment that the exorcist needs before he would ever attempt the rite.”

7 thoughts on “Paging Max Von Sydow…

  1. I think we need a reality show about this, but I’m not sure of the format.

    Should it be 5 people in a house all waiting for the exorcist to show up. They vote off the sanest one and the most demonic gets an exorcism?

    Or should it be 4 normal people and one possessed person and the audience has to vote to figure out which one’s possessed?

    I did some research and found this amusing self-assessment for demonic possession:


  2. I am sure I read not long ago that the Church was moving away from exorcisms anyway, that the modern concept of evil and the devil had changed. That might just be true in America, because the article also cites the influx of people from other nations where the religion is (my words, not the article’s) more old-fashioned and belief in the need for exorcism is stronger.


  3. I was brought up Catholic (but ran screaming from religion in my early 20s) and always found exorcism to be one of the more bizarre and fascinating aspects of Catholicism. Hard to believe they still do that in this day and age. LOVE your ATC!


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