Catholic Exorcism


Hello everyone,

I’m just wondering what the Church’s stance is on exorcisms and demons. What is the actual Rite of Exorcism, and are there even any performed anymore? I’ve heard that in recent years, more and more exorcism candidates are being chalked up as mentally unstable or psychologically ill. Also, is there an established position for exorcisms, like a diocesan exorcist? All responses are greatly appreciated.


Exorcisms are certainly still done, but only after all medical avenues are exhausted.

I also believe that it has to have the approval of the Holy See. (Correct me if I’m wrong)


I believe you are corrrect about exhausting other avenues.

Every diocese has an official exorcist (or knows where to get one).


See An Exorcist Tells His Story and An Exorcist - More Stories by Father Gabriele Amorth, the Dhief Exorcist for the Diocese of Rome.


Every diocese should have an official exorcist. Not all have one though, and that is unfortunate.

Fr. Gabriele Amorth is the senior exorcist of Vatican City. He says that exorcisms are being given less importance and garnering less attention as years go by. Especially as society secularizes and turns to superstition, magic, voodoo, mediums, Satanism, Ouija boards, and things like that to solve paranormal problems.

In his books, *An Exorcist *and An Exorcist: More Stories, he gives many examples for why exorcisms and demonic possessions should be important topics for Catholics.

I recommend those two books. I’ve read them. The accounts of exorcisms that he’s done in the past are really alarming. It’s very good reading. I know that you just can’t go and buy any book that someone recommends, but he is an expert on the subject and one of the first people I turn to for information like exorcisms.

It’s kind of an issue that some modern day Catholics dismiss as being “un-scientific.” They, therefore, turn to medicine and psychology. In most cases, all it is is a medical problem. But after medicine has failed, most people, even Catholics, turn to the wrong people for help (eg witches, shamans, mediums) when they should be turning to exorcists.


Has to be approved by the local bishop.


I second this! Both books are excellent!


Exorcisms are still done today. In fact their are six or seven full time exorcist in the USA. I believe they form some kind of expertise group that speaks about exorcism.

This is also interesting:

In 1999, Cardinal Medina Estevez presented journalists in Vatican-City the new version of the “Rituale Romanum” that has been used by the Catholic Church since 1614. The updates came after more than 10 years of editing and is called “De exorcismis et supplicationibus quibusdam” otherwise known as “The exorcism for the upcoming millennium”. The Pope approbated the new Exorcism Rite, which is now allowed for worldwide use. This new form of exorcism came after the German Bishop-Conference demanded to ultimately abolish the “Rituale Romun”.

God speed.



Wht did they want it abolished? Didn’t it work successfully for centuries?


Well I think they wanted to update it for the medical stuff of today just to be sure that it was a case of possession. The German conference has annuonced that some people who were possessed were really not. Such as the case for Anneliese Michel
who I think exibited all of the qualifications of being possessed in that were listed in the Rituale Romanum. We know her as Emily Rose. The movie was based on her story.

God speed.



I third this, I loved these books!
They really helped me to understand the reality of the spiritual battle, but I think it’s a fair point to mention that although there are evil spirits, and we should be aware of their plans that we might “fight the good fight”, I do know people (good Catholics) who just give the demonic stuff way too much attention!
I believe the devil can twist good stuff, like these great books, to make people be afraid of him (that’s if you don’t fully understand that God is bigger than all that stuff).
As St. Pio said "Fear is a greater evil than evil itself!
"For people who have this frame of mind I would not encourage them to read these books.

Here’s another question: What’s the diffrence between the ministry of Exorcism and Deliverence Ministry? I’ve heard of lay people who claim to be involved in Deliverence ministry!
As someone already said, I thought only an appointed ordained Priest could “deliver” someone from evil spirits!?


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