The Danger Of Exorcism

Exorcism is a serious sacramental rite of the Christian Church, and a ritual used by many other religious beliefs outside of Christianity.  However it is one ritual that require extensive training and careful planning, and should never be undertaken by lay people or even clergy who are untrained or under-prepared.

While skeptics and Atheists continue to deride the rite as well as those that perform it, a growing number of the professional mental healthcare providers are at least recognizing that the rite has at least a certain degree of therapeutic value, and some doctors are participating in or even conducting the rite themselves.  Those that have witnessed the phenomena of diabolic infestation first hand, report that their lives have completely changed, everything they thought they knew for sure about life and the universe and modern scientific thought, suddenly was erased by an ancient—thought to be only mythological—entity; Satan and or his minions.

Who can perform the rite?

The Roman Catholic and most of the Orthodox and Independent Catholic orders outside of the Romans, generally hold to the position that only ordained clergy can perform the rite, those ministers that have received their Holy Orders (ordinations) through valid lines of Apostolic Succession [1] and through this line received the authority given by Christ to the original Apostles to cast out demons.  With this said it should be noted that many Protestant ministers have successfully performed the rite.

Protestant teaching differs from the Catholic in that Protestants believe that any Christian who has accepted Christ as his/her savior has the authority to cast out demons.  And herein lies the danger, untrained lay people or those that are not capable of guarding their minds have allowed themselves to become unwilling pawns in the senseless deaths of innocents.  Simply put these people have killed those they were trying to save.

The media is full of reports from around the world of unnecessary deaths caused by failed attempts at exorcism, skeptic web sites such as whatstheharm.net /exorcisms.html have listed dozens of such failed attempts, most of which never should have ever taken place.  Most were performed by family or lay people, while some were performed by clergy that were untrained or unprepared.

We suggest that the reader makes use of the Google search engine and does some research on the subject.  We also suggest that no one submit to an exorcism without prior medical and mental exams, and we also suggest that no one submits to an exorcism when the minister is unprepared or incapable of rational thought.

In the Pacific rim nations, it seems that the common belief is that demons can be “washed” away, and we find numerous accounts of death by drowning.  We find that in other parts of the world people have died after being beaten to death by those trying to literally “beat the devil” out of the victim.  One bizarre report claims that the family of the victim tried to cram crucifixes down the victim’s throat.  Probably the bottom line here is that someone never thought to ask the question of “does it do any good to drown, beat to death, or torture to death the victim just to exorcism the demon?”

Please remember that an actual possession is very, very rare, so if you think you are possessed or someone you know is possessed, you/they probably are not.  It’s probably something totally different that is bothering you.  Exorcism should always be reserved for a last resort chance at healing the ailment, and never performed by untrained, inexperienced personal.

Take time to research the ‘net, before you become another statistic.

[1] see: http://www.catholic.com/tracts/apostolic-succession

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_succession

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