• Italy's news in English
 
app_header_v3

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. 

Story continues below…

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
Toby the reject dog wants you to mend his broken heart
Toby the dog. Photo: Canile di Varese

Toby the reject dog wants you to mend his broken heart
2 hours ago

He needs €2,500.

Italy PM demands EU change course on 'deadly' austerity
Renzi said austerity economics had resulted in Europe being left behind by the United States. Photo: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP

Italy PM demands EU change course on 'deadly' austerity
2 hours ago

"Because if austerity is all you have, you die."

Italian priest and HIV sufferer arrested in child sex probe
The probe was launched after the mother of a 16-year-old boy found messages on his mobile phone. Photo: Mariah Dietzler

Italian priest and HIV sufferer arrested in child sex probe
3 hours ago

The prostitution network operated through social media.

Jobless man burns himself to death in car at Italian market
The unemployed man killed himself at a market near Palermo. Photo: SNappa2006

Jobless man burns himself to death in car at Italian market
4 hours ago

The man set himself ablaze in his Fiat Idea after sending a Whatsapp message saying 'forgive me' to his daughter.

Nastro Azzuro creator backs Japan takeover of Peroni
The Italian brand could soon be in Japanese hands. Photo: Thos Robinson/AFP

Nastro Azzuro creator backs Japan takeover of Peroni
4 hours ago

Nastro Azzuro was first created in 1963.

Top Amazon executive to lead Italy's digital drive
Diego Piacentini will do a two-year stint with the Italian government. Photo: Amazon

Top Amazon executive to lead Italy's digital drive
6 hours ago

And the Italian is doing it for free...

Best-selling Elena Ferrante novels get TV adaptation
Ferrante's bestselling works are set to be adapted for TV. Photo: quattrostagioni

Best-selling Elena Ferrante novels get TV adaptation
6 hours ago

The quartet of stories tells the story of two friends growing up in Naples.

Italy swoops on powerful women-run Mafia clan
The women were know as the "three queens of Caltagirone", a town in Sicily. Photo: Audrey H

Italy swoops on powerful women-run Mafia clan
6 hours ago

Three women had ruled the clan with an iron grip.

Italy arrests former prelate over €30 million fraud
The money was allegedly laundered through individuals and companies in Italy and overseas. Photo: Gabriel Buoys/AFP

Italy arrests former prelate over €30 million fraud
22 hours ago

A fresh scandal for the Vatican.

'I'd burn my gay son' comment enrages parents of gay kids
A Northern League councillor has said he would burn his gay son. Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

'I'd burn my gay son' comment enrages parents of gay kids
22 hours ago

“If my son was gay, I would throw him in a furnace and burn him.”

Sponsored Article
US taxes and FATCA: 'The time for hiding is over'
National
Italian war prisoner's letter delivered after 72 years
Pilgrims loot Rome homes 'to pay for Padre Pio trip'
National
Raffaele Sollecito creates a social network for the dead
Seventy hurt by flying oranges in Italy's crazy fruit fight
How Under the Tuscan Sun changed a small Italian town
National
Ten things to do in Italy in February
Ten fantastic holidays for Italy-loving foodies
5,000 migrant kids vanished in Italy: but where are they?
National
What you need to know about Italy's new smoking laws
Politics
Why Italy's scrapping to be let into Europe's big boys' club
International
US museum gives Italy back looted head of Greek statue
National
Why Italy has no choice but to pass gay civil unions bill
National
Rome's nude statues covered to spare Rouhani's blushes
National
Thousands march in Italy for gay rights
National
Meet Dante Alighieri's stargazing Italian descendant
National
Why are tourists turning away from Rome?
Culture
Ten wonderfully quirky Italian animal-related idioms
Society
Italy chills out over medical cannabis cultivators
National
Italy gay unions face defeat as left-wing Catholics rebel
National
Bronze Age village found near ancient Roman city
Health
Probe sheds light on Italy childbirth deaths
International
Europe's open border policy not working: Italy
3,261
jobs available