Fri 1st Aug 2014 | Last updated: Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 17:00pm

Facebook Logo Twitter Logo RSS Logo
Hot Topics

Latest News

Benedict XVI performed exorcism in St Peter’s Square, claims priest

By on Friday, 3 February 2012

Exorcist Fr Gabriele Amorth (CNS photo/Daniele Colariet i, Catholic Press Photo)

Exorcist Fr Gabriele Amorth (CNS photo/Daniele Colariet i, Catholic Press Photo)

Benedict XVI cured two men of demonic possession when he blessed them in St Peter’s Square, a leading exorcist has claimed.

Fr Gabriele Amorth said that when the Pope blessed the men they “flew three metres backwards” and “howled no longer”.

In extracts from a new book, published yesterday by Panorama magazine in Italy, Fr Amorth explained that incident occurred when the men, known only as Giovanni and Marco, attended a general audience.

When the Pope appeared, Fr Amorth said, according to AFP: “The two possessed men fell to the floor and banged their heads on the ground. The Swiss guards watched but did nothing; perhaps they have seen how the possessed react when faced by the Pope before?

“The Pope began to wave to the crowd and Giovanni and Marco started to howl, drool, shake and fly into a rage.

“The possessed were then hit by a wild jolt, their whole bodies were hit. They flew three metres backwards … and howled no longer.”

Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi denied that the Pope had performed an exorcism.

“Even if the facts are true, it’s not correct to talk about an exorcism by the Pope, who was not warned or aware of their presence,” he said.

Fr Amorth made a similar claim about Blessed Pope John Paul II. In 2000, he said that the late pope performed an impromptu exorcism on a a teenage girl at the end of an audience in St Peter’s Square. The Vatican’s press office declined to comment on the claim at the time.

  • Mrprocaccino2

    Stupid article. ENQUIRE type story…Alien babies are next!!!!

  • http://twitter.com/bcsny47 Brian Sullivan

    Fr. Lombardi is right. It may have happened, but it is incorrect to say say that the Pope performed an exorcism.

  • Parepidemos

    I  also am highly sceptical. Why one earth would people supposedly possessed by demons go anywher near a papal audience? It is also nonsensical to say that the Swiss guards would not have reacted upon seeing such bizarre behaviour. It is significant that Fr, Amorth made a similar claim regariding John Paul II.

  • Robert

    Fr. Amorth did not say the pope performed an exorcism. In fact, in a quote I read yesterday, he specifically said: one could not speak of an exorcism, it was a blessing and that the Pope was apparently not even aware of the two men. Someone is deliberately distorting Fr. Amorth’s words.

  • Anonymous

    Kudos to Father Lombardi.

  • Sacredheartandbloodofjesus

    @parepidemos.
    Most possessed people are not controlled by the demons throughout the whole day. These men probably realized they were oppressed or possessed and knew a blessing from the Pope could possibly help them.

  • Anonymous

    Part of the problem is the headline of this article confusing readers of what actually happened. Strictly speaking it was not an exorcism as the Church understands the term, but a papal blessing which may have had the same effect as an exorcism, given the description of what happened to the men, and Who Benedict XVI represents on earth.
    I do trust Fr. Amorth and know that every priest is officially an exorcist, even though there are priests and lay people who doubt the supernatural and thus, have a problem believing in exorcisms. Now, how a man or woman of faith has problems with the supernatural and with the ritual of exorcisms is beyond me.

  • Anonymous

    Why one earth would people supposedly possessed by demons go anywher near a papal audience?” Good question, but it is my understanding that possessed people do not always know they are possessed and it is possible they decided to go to St. Peter’s Square to see the Pope. As for the reaction of the Swiss Guards, it also makes sense to me if they also witnessed what John Paul II did in the papal apartments many years ago

  • Anonymous

    There is nothing stupid about the article unless one thinks happenings of the supernatural, such as miracles and exorcisms, are in the same category as “Alien babies…”

  • in fegato

    if I were possessed I woudl be attracted to the place where the devil seems to win more often than not

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZBH6TUVQ56WL3EF643447JSVEQ tripp

    From the Panorama article: Mr Amorth said two of his helpers brought the men, known only as Giovanni and Marco, to the audience to see the Pope, where they began to shake, becoming increasingly agitated and showing violent signs of being possessed.
    When one of the helpers asked Giovanni to control himself, he said “I am not Giovanni” in a voice that was not his own, before throwing himself on the floor along with Marco when the papal car arrived, Mr Amorth said.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZBH6TUVQ56WL3EF643447JSVEQ tripp

    Also from the Panorama article: Mr Amorth said two of his helpers brought the men, known only as Giovanni and Marco, to the audience to see the Pope, where they began to shake, becoming increasingly agitated and showing violent signs of being possessed.
    When one of the helpers asked Giovanni to control himself, he said “I am not Giovanni” in a voice that was not his own, before throwing himself on the floor along with Marco when the papal car arrived, Mr Amorth said.
     
    It appears the men were there because Amorth suspected they were possessed and his helpers brought them there.
     
     
     

  • Brad

    Why on earth did many, many, many, many demoniacs approach Christ during his three years walking about the land?  The Gerasene, ostensibly the most virulently possessed of all of them, hailed Christ from afar, ran to him, and addressed him first, craving a dialogue with Him.  The same is true today with any of Christ’s ordained.

  • Brad

    The Lenten scrutinies of the catechumenate are exorcisms performed in full view of packed pews who think they are merely witnessing cute blessings.

  • Brad

    Forget about the humans who are possessed in regards to this news item.  That is, the wills and intellects of the humans who betook themselves to the square that day.  What is more important to ponder is that demons are fallen angels who intimately knew God in a way we cannot fathom prior to their momentous choice.  They are not afraid to approach their Creator, as witnessed by their aggressive approach to our Lord during his ministerial wanderings, nor are they afraid to enter churches.  As a matter of fact, it takes an arsenal of effort to eject them from holy places and from among the assembled company of holy people.

  • Brad

    If only more people would read Fr. Amorth’s two-volume memoirs.  He is, incidentally, the exorcist of the diocese in question.  St. Pio revealed to us that if we could see the demons, “they would blot out the sun”.  But we are exceedingly foolish sheep and do not like to discuss the wolves that savagely cull us constantly.

  • Brad

    You are right.  The unseen world does not exist.  Your eyes are the be all and end all.  There is no evil.  There are no evil, fallen angels predating souls in this world.  There are no rather dramatic points of intersection between these entities and the vicar of Christ, or His other ordained representatives.  The Book of Acts is a fairy tale.  While we are at it, there is no God, because your eyes have not seen Him.

  • Abadilla

    There is nothing you wrote I can disagree with, but the story as published lends itself to misunderstandings.
    Some people seem to think this happened in a papal audience. No, it happened as the Pope moved through St. Peter’s Square. One does not have papal audiences in St. Peter’s Square, one has them in the Paul VI Audience Hall and private audiences with the Pope if one is important enough to have the privilege to see the Pope personally.
    Lombardi might be the type of priest who has problems with exorcisms and the supernatural, many priests do, but Fr. Amorth is an expert on these matters and recognized evil spirits or Satan where they or he is, so I tend to believe him more than in anyone else, including the Vatican spokes-person.

  • Brad

    We agree :-)

  • Abadilla

    Well, it is a miracle in itself two people actually agree in this forum! :-)

  • Kenneth M. Fisher

    abadilla,

    You are partially correct.  Up until the new Rite of  Ordination was promulgated, all priest receive the minor Order of Exorcist befpre ordination to the Priesthood; however and unfortunately, the new Rite no longer does so.

    God bless,  yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
    Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

  • Kenneth M. Fisher

    Pardpidemos,

    Don’t you believe God are even His Mother are capable of forcing the Devils to make big mistakes?

    God bless,  yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher, Founder & Chairman
    Concerned Roman Catholics of America, Inc.

  • Jack Webb

    You obviously seem to know quite a lot about Enquirer articles. May I suggest next time in the supermarket avoid the temptation of picking it up?

  • Mark13:13

    Why on earth would someone do drugs when they know the consequences? Have an affair? Drink and drive? Have you ever done something really stupid even when you knew beforehand it was stupid?

  • Abadilla

    Wow! I’m still laughing at this one!

  • Abadilla

    Why? For being skeptical instead of being a man of faith? Isn’t a priest supposed to be a man of faith?

  • Abadilla

    I stand corrected, but I now wonder if that is the reason so many priests today are skeptical of the Rite of Exorcism.

  • Anon

    Re: attacks by the satanic legions, piercing tinnitus; excruciating abdominal pains and suffocating odours… I don’t know the physics of it, but it is real and can make one quite Old Testament in one’s responses. Prayers please.

  • Adiutricem

    Yankee Stadium?

  • Abadilla

    I would not play with fire if I were you, one can get “literally” burned!