Warlock

On Monday, Dec. 23, in the first hour of Catholic Answers Live, A worried mother called about her children losing their faith. She said that her son referred to himself as a “warlock.” I was a Wiccan before becoming Christian, so this term is a red flag for me. It is widely believed that a warlock is a male witch. This is erroneous. When I was I was initiated as Wiccan clergy I became a witch. A male witch is a witch. So why would her son call himself a warlock? He may be mentally ill; in my experience most people that use this term have psychological issues. For example, he may have the delusion that he can do magic, and have picked up this term from television to explain it. She should get him to a psychologist as soon as possible. The other possibility is that he is misinformed. He could have unreliable sources on the occult. No legitimate witch or occultist would use that term. If the son is really interested in witchcraft or Wicca, his mother could recommend the books of Starhawk, which are good introductions to Goddess religion. Please don’t be offended that I am drawing some distinctions about the occult. Christians don’t need to go wonky or throw their mind in the trash because someone mentions the Craft. It is reasonable to make factual and moral judgements even about things we disagee with.–Rumil

I don’t know very much about Wicca, so please correct me if I’m wrong, but the Wicca movement is part of neopaganism, right? Because that could explain why he used different terminology than you. Maybe the books you read and the communities you were in called male witches witches, but there are probably other Wicca/neo-pagan books and communities that call them Warlocks. Because it’s modern, I’m guessing it’s every man for himself. But I could be wrong – is the movement unified in its terminology?

Or, he may be just immature - some teen and preteen kids want to be “different” and rebellious and shock their parents.

Well, you are missing a piece of the faith. Christ does make a point to mention the demonic for a reason, they exist.

Those who dabble in the occult may be deluding themselves, messing with the demonic, or both. Warlocks are male witches in some occult/magic circles (wiccan is only one of the groups that exist), or they may be called druids in others. Either way, the end result is that people can be mislead by the demonic which is why it forbidden to Judeo-Christians.

Looking at the etymology of the word it makes more sense. Warlock used to mean: A man in league with the Devil, a male magic user. Popular society used to equate magic with the demonic. Today the definition is considered outdated by popular society but Christians still believe magic is connected with the demonic for good reason.

While the poor boy may be suffering from a mental illness, it is also very likely that he could be suffering from a demonic affliction as well. It is very hard to say without the help of both a good medical professional who is aware and has dealt with spiritual issues and a prayerful and experienced Priest (ideally an exorcist) in such matters. The demonic like to hide, and they are very good at it.

In my experience in mental health, I have meet and helped people who dabbled into New Age or the occult and it resulted in diabolically caused disorders which could have easily been dismissed as a “normal” mental disorder. However, organically caused mental disorders do not disappear with deliverance prayers (weak exorcisms).

Remember, as a follower of Christ’s teachings, he divided the sick into two groups: the sick and the possessed. Each was healed but treated differently. One was a gentle healing and the other had stern warning to avoid the sin again lest the disorder return in force.

God Bless

Don’t leave us hanging!!! What is a warlock, then, if not a male witch?

Warlock is an old Germanic word for “oath breaker”, its a grave insult amongst pagans. The fact he calls himself that makes me think he’s not a serious pagan, but just a person interested in magic or a “fluffy” pagan.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.