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‘Emergency’ need for exorcists after surge in people dabbling in Satanism and black magic

ROME, ITALY - JANUARY 12:  Don Aldo Buonaiuto holds the necessary for his exorcisms on January 12, 2012 in Rome, Italy. Father Aldo Bonaiuto, one of the Vatican's team of anti-occult priest, holds lessons of exorcism at the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical Atheneum  in Rome. The course is meant as a help to deepen in the reality of the ministry of exorcism in its theoretical and practical implications, and as a help for bishops in the preparation of priests who may be called to this ministry.  (Photo by Franco Origlia/Getty Images)

Exorcists are in urgent demand as a result of a sharp rise in people dabbling in Satanism and the occult,  experts from the Catholic Church in Italy and the US said.

Speaking in tongues, levitating and vomiting nails may seem far-fetched to most people, but church experts insist there is a need to recruit more priests as exorcists in order to combat sorcery and black magic.

Valter Cascioli, a psychologist and scientific consultant to the International Association of Exorcists, which is endorsed by the Vatican, described as an “emergency” the lack of priests capable of fighting the forces of evil.

“The lack of exorcists is a real emergency. There is a pastoral emergency as a result of a significant increase in the number of diabolical possessions that exorcist priests are confronting,” he told La Stampa newspaper.

“The number of people who take part in occult and satanic practices, which lead to serious physical, psychological and spiritual damages, is constantly rising.”

Dr Cascioli teaches courses in exorcism at the Pontifical University of Regina Apostolorum, a Vatican-backed university in Rome. “The number of exorcists has increased in recent years, but there are still not enough to deal with a dramatic situation that affects, above all, young people who use the internet a lot.

“There is a broad spread of superstitious practices, and with that a growing number of requests for help from people who are directly or indirectly struck by evil.

“It is dangerous to underestimate a phenomenon that is caused by the direct actions of the devil, but also by a decline in faith and values.”


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