Exorcism is vital in battle against evil : Pope Francis

Pope Francis has praised exorcisms as a ‘way to fight against evil’, battle against ‘seductions’ and ‘escape from the power of sin’ during his weekly address in Rome. In a powerful portrayal of the world as a constant, cosmic battle between good and bad, the pope urged Christians to ‘drive out evil’ and emphasised the importance of baptism in order to exorcise demons. He said that the sacrament of baptism ‘enables those who receive it to fight against the spirit of evil’, adding that ‘all Christian life is a battle’ and that believers should take precautions against the deceit of the devil. ‘We know from experience that the Christian life is always prone to temptation, especially to the temptation to separate from God, from his will, from communion with him, to fall back into the webs of worldly seductions,’ he said. ‘And baptism prepares and strengthens us for this daily struggle, including the fight against the devil who, as St Peter says, like a lion, tries to devour and destroy us.’ He went on: ‘It is hard to fight against evil, to escape from its deceits, to take strength again after an exhausting struggle, but we must know that all Christian life is a combat.’ The pope explained that adults preparing for baptism are subjected to ‘repeated exorcisms pronounced by the priest’. He added: ‘That is, prayers that call for liberation from all that separates from Christ and prevents intimate union with him.’ Francis said that baptism ‘is not a magic formula’ but ‘a gift from the Holy Spirit’. The comments come after a Vatican conference on exorcism earlier this month heard that demands for exorcisms has reached such a peak that priests are casting out demons over the phone. More than 200 aspiring exorcists gathered in Rome for the week-long training programme. Catholic Church officials insist the number of demonic possessions is on the rise, saying the internet and television programmes have prompted a ‘fascination’ with the occult.     source: Christian today

Source: News

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