The story of Gabriele Amorth: the priest who fought against the Devil and inspired the saga “The Exorcist”

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Gabriele Amorth was known as “the Vatican exorcist” as he officially carried out these practices for the diocese of Rome, the religious was proud of his work and spoke of one of the oldest and most controversial religious rites of the Roman Catholic Church.

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Amorth was the inspiration for the saga The exorcistthe horror classic directed by William Friedkin with Linda Blair, Ellen Burstyn released in 1973

“Exorcism is God’s very miracle,” Amorth told the Los Angeles Times in an interview in 2004. He claimed to have performed 70 of these ceremonies.

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The word of Gabriele Amorth: the exorcist of the Vatican

“I’ve never been afraid of the devil,” Amorth said. “Indeed, I can tell that he is often afraid of me.”

Amorth died in 2016 after a long illness at the age of 91.

The religious man helped promote the ritual of banishing the devil from people or places, which has experienced something of a renaissance in recent years. The exorcisms were welcomed by Pope John Paul II, who revealed that he performed two or three in his entire life.

The truth is Amorth claimed to have performed dozens of exorcisms, a ritual that hasn’t changed since medieval times. and which consists of a series of prayers to denounce and expel Satan. Its rebirth is due to the search for a religious explanation of the evil that is perceived in the world.

The Italian-born priest blamed the devil for a variety of evils, such as pornography, drug addiction and secularism.. I’ve even seen Satan lurking in magical tales like the “Harry Potter” series.

A scene from "L

A scene from “The Exorcist”

Gabriele Amorth’s fight against the devil

The Catholic Church teaches that Satan is real, but Amorth’s zeal for exorcisms – and their spectacularity – made the more progressive sectors of the Church uneasy. Some priests and other specialistsThey prefer a more scientific approach to what many consider mental illness, not demonic possession.

Exorcists, appointed by bishops, should ensure that the person requesting an exorcism has first sought medical assistance. Only when a medical response is ruled out can the priest perform the ritual.

Amorth said in the 2004 interview that he followed those rules, but added: “I know there are many skeptics. The presence of the devil is often ignored.”

She also said she loved the classic horror film ‘The Exorcist’ which was directed by William Friedkin in 1973 and based on a 1971 novel by William Peter Blatty. Some of the special effects may have been a bit over the top, Amorth said, but the film illuminated the work of an exorcist and the dangers of demons.

Gabriele Amorth and the 70,000 exorcisms

House of "L

House of “The Exorcist”.

Amorth, who has performed more than 70,000 exorcisms, does not mean he has witnessed 70,000 people, because according to Amorth, the same person may need dozens of sessions to free themselves from their demons.

The religious was born in 1925 in the Italian city of Modena, entered the Society of Saint Paul in 1947, he was ordained a priest in 1951 and in 1985 he was appointed official exorcist of the diocese of Rome.

Though he retired, Amorth continued to practice for many years at the headquarters of the Congregation of the Society of St. Paul, just outside the historic center of Rome.

Source: Clarin

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