The Devil You Know: Irish Priest claims more exorcists needed


Irish priest Father Pat Collins claimes demonic possession and evil influence is on the rise. Is that strange noise in the night your house settling or the devil?

Father Collins recently told The Irish Catholic newspaper that he’s approached daily by people claiming to have experienced evil activity. He claims people also believe they’re possessed by demons as well. Father Collins claims he doesn’t know why Irish bishops aren’t taking his pleas seriously.

Collins told the newspaper religious leaders have a tendency to rebuff claims of demonic possessions. He says they sometimes view exorcism as an outdated practice but if church leaders take that line of thinking, they are “out of touch with reality”.

Most of the general populations introduction to demonic possession and the Rite of Exorcism came via the 1973 shocker The ExorcistWith reports of people fainting in the theater, director William Freidkin made the devil scary again. But Father Collins claims that demonic possession isn’t something cooked up in Hollywood pitch meetings.

The Rite of Exorcism was introduced by the Vatican in 1614. Some 385 years later in 1999, the Vatican under Pope John Paul II revised the Rite of Exorcism. So how do they decide what’s possession and what isn’t? The Vatican lays out several criteria to look for.

When determining if demonic possession is real, the church works with mental health and medical professionals. Investigations consist of mental illness and medical screenings first. When that’s ruled out, the church looks for those afflicted to speak in languages they shouldn’t know. Other signs include possessing “hidden” or occult knowledge and having strength way beyond their physical limitations.

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In 2016, The Telegraph said the number of exorcists in the United States had doubled from 12 to 50. According to the article, whether a diocese (local Catholic church) even has an exorcist on staff is up to the bishop.

Will the Vatican take Father Collins pleas seriously? One would hope for our mortal souls sake. Additionally, Dr. Richard Gallagher, a psychiatrist who teaches at Columbia University and New York Medical College, claimed to CNN that “demonic possession is real”. 

One only has to look at the news to conclude that evil is on the rise. But is the devil and his minions the one’s driving us on this highway to hell? For all of our sake, I hope Father Collins is wrong.

Next: Top 10 Hilarious The Exorcists Parodies

Find the threat of real evil fascinating? Think exorcisms are real? Let the other possessed know what you think in the comment section below.