• Italy's news in English
 

Exorcism course 'open to priests and housewives'

The Local · 8 May 2014, 14:21

Published: 08 May 2014 14:21 GMT+02:00

Organized by the Pontifical Athenaeum Apostolorum, an educational institute of the Catholic Church in Rome, the course, taking place between the capital and Bologna, aims to “raise awareness of the devil’s existence and the possibility for possession”, rather than stir up paranoia, Father Cesare Truqui, a top exorcist, told Vatican Radio.

“Having this knowledge helps to establish a balance. We understand that it [the devil’s possession] happens rarely, but when it does, its influence can be fought with God and by prayer and devotion.”

He added that the event, which wraps up on Saturday, is open to all, “even housewives”.

“A priest exorcist is usually accompanied by a number of laypeople, who assist him in carrying out his mission…either psychologists or doctors, but also normal people like professionals or housewives.”

The assistants play an important role in establishing whether a person is possessed by the devil and then “curing the discerning spirit”, he continued.

A report in La Repubblica late last year said that dioceses across Italy were boosting the number of priests trained in exorcism due to a rise in the number of demonic cases.

Father Franceso Bamonte, the president of the Italy-based International Association of Exorcists, told the newspaper that the rising demand is a result of more people subscribing to occultism, with the 250 or so exorcists in Italy “often unable to handle the enormous number of requests for help”.

Many people turn to exorcists for help with personal problems, either involving their family or work, Father Vincenzo Taraborelli, an exorcist in Rome, also told the newspaper. 

He said he sees dozens of people a day.

"Priests don't have time to comfort and listen to them. So they come to me. They knock at my door seeking a blessing, or help with their suffering," he said.

Don't miss a story about Italy - Join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.it)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Isis claims Tripoli car bomb near Eni office
The car bomb in Tripoli injured one person and damaged offices co-owned by Italy's Eni. Photo: David Stanley

Isis claims Tripoli car bomb near Eni office

1 hour ago

The Isis jihadist group on Tuesday claimed a car bomb attack against an oil company co-owned by Italy's Eni in the Libyan capital that wounded one person.

Italian woman 'too fat' for bakery job
The woman was turned down for a job in a bakery because she was overweight. Photo: Kayla Nichole

Italian woman 'too fat' for bakery job

1 hour ago

An Italian woman has claimed she was turned down for a job at a bakery in Latina, Lazio, because she is "too fat".

Rights court slams Italy over migrant conditions
A migrant behind a fence at a temporary refugee camp in Lampedusa earlier this year. Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Rights court slams Italy over migrant conditions

2 hours ago

The European Court of Human Rights ruled on Tuesday that Tunisian migrants had been unlawfully detained on the island of Lampedusa in 2011 in conditions that "diminished their human dignity".

Renzi under pressure over brutal Sicily murder
Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP

Renzi under pressure over brutal Sicily murder

2 hours ago

Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi came under increasing pressure on Tuesday to respond after a refugee was arrested on suspicion of the brutal murder of an elderly couple in Sicily.

Israel PM criticized for Italian fine dining
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at Milan's Expo. Photo: Giuseppe Cacace/AFP

Israel PM criticized for Italian fine dining

6 hours ago

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faced criticism on Tuesday from ultra-Orthodox politicians for having eaten in a non-kosher restaurant serving rabbit, escargot and lobster during a recent trip to Italy.

Italy's jobless rate at lowest level in two years
Italy's unemployment rate fell to 12 percent in July. Photo: Shutterstock

Italy's jobless rate at lowest level in two years

6 hours ago

Italy’s unemployment rate fell to 12 percent in July – the lowest level in two years, the national statistics agency, Istat, said on Tuesday.

Migrant 'footballer' almost lands Italian deal
The real Lamine Diatta in action for Saint-Étienne. Photo:latouffedisco / Flickr

Migrant 'footballer' almost lands Italian deal

7 hours ago

An 18-year-old migrant from Gambia wowed an Abruzzo football club with his silky football skills after convincing them he was a Senegalese football player.

Fiat chief pushes for GM merger talks
FCA chief Sergio Marchionne wants merger talks with General Motors. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images North America/AFP

Fiat chief pushes for GM merger talks

9 hours ago

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chief Sergio Marchionne is raising pressure on much larger rival General Motors for merger talks, saying in a Detroit interview the logic of the deal is "irrefutable."

Venice Film Festival
Depp and Netflix are the talk of Venice film fest
Johnny Depp on the red carpet in Venice in 2007. Photo: Christophe Simon / AFP

Depp and Netflix are the talk of Venice film fest

9 hours ago

Johnny Depp tops the cast of stars headed to Venice this week for what is shaping up as something of a watershed edition of the world's oldest film festival.

Euro 2016 qualifiers
Napoli's Insigne added to Italy squad
Napoli forward Lorenzo Insigne has been added to the Italy squad for upcoming Euro 2016 qualifiers. Photo: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

Napoli's Insigne added to Italy squad

9 hours ago

Napoli forward Lorenzo Insigne has been added to the Italy squad for upcoming Euro 2016 qualifiers against Malta and Bulgaria as a replacement for Sebastian Giovinco.

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS

National
Alpine dam disaster remembered 50 years on
National
Italian lesbian author gets papal blessing
National
Muslim mayor refuses to take in refugees
Travel
Ten adventurous ways to see Italy
Education
Fewer Italians want to be doctors
Sport
Nibali kicked off Tour of Spain for hitching a lift
Features
Italy's best-kept secrets: 10 must-see places
Italy wants answers on mobster's flashy funeral
National
The neglected children of Italy's domestic workers
National
Doggy bags: The last Italian taboo?
Travel
Civita: The Italian town that refuses to die
Travel
How bad mannered tourists are riling Venice
National
Italy slammed for 'faking' Roman ruin
National
10 Italian dishes with truly disgusting names
National
Italian park held hostage by 'veggie' panther
National
Lost pensioner survives on herbs for nine days
National
Italian mum and daughter reunited after WWII
Five 'ghost' buildings that cost Italy dearly
National
Pompeii survives bumpy restoration saga
National
Italian town warns people to 'stop dying'
National
Why Italy's south is far better than the north
Rome 'too crowded' for more migrants: mayor
Politics
Italy's anti-establishment party 'ready to govern'
Sport
Rome rules out using Vatican for Olympic bid
National
Italy's south is worse off than Greece
National
What happens to Italy’s missing migrant kids?
National
Rome mayor fights for survival amid chaos
National
Six dodgy fashion trends to emerge from Italy
National
Is Italy about to legalize cannabis?
National
Rome's 'decay' prompts council reshuffle
Business & Money
Chinese are quaffing more Italian wine
Travel
Seven daft TripAdvisor comments about Italy
National
Italian town bans dog barking during naptime
National
Tornado predicted as Italy heatwave ends
National
Italy told to recognize same-sex couple rights
National
Migrant girl dies after insulin thrown in sea
National
Heatwave kills 140 pensioners in Piedmont
National
Treviso homeowners burn migrants' furniture
National
Tourists in hot water for Rome fountain dips
Migrants rush to help after Venice tornado
Politics
Isis steps up campaign with Italy consulate hit
National
Paolini tweets 'sorry' for cocaine shame
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,191
jobs available