Rorate Caeli

BREAKING UPDATE: Francis versus Lucifer?

Update from the AP

The Rev. Gabriele Amorth, a leading exorcist for the diocese of Rome, said he performed a lengthy exorcism of his own on the man Tuesday morning and ascertained he was possessed by four separate demons. The case was related to the legalization of abortion in Mexico City, he said.

Amorth told RAI state radio that even a short prayer, without the full rite of exorcism being performed, is in itself a type of exorcism.

"That was a true exorcism," he said of Francis' prayer. "Exorcisms aren't just done according to the rules of the ritual."

Original Rorate story:

We have been covering (here) the remarkable words of Pope Francis -- remarkable only because the post-Conciliar Church has all but buried Satan for dead, but remarkable nonetheless -- and the Devil, and our need to recognize his power and reject his temptations.

His words, however, may have just be taken to a whole other, public level.

A caution: the Vatican, through Fr. Lombardi, has already, somewhat, dismissed this. The denial, as usual, leaves a lot to interpretation -- the "had no intention to" line is always the "out" of a spokesman. Read it for yourself here and decide.

Now, from The Sun (go here for additional photos):

POPE Francis has been embroiled in a scandal after footage emerged today appearing to show him giving a man an exorcism in St Peter's Square.

The astonishing incident between the Pontiff and the person in a wheelchair, took place immediately after Pentecostal mass on Sunday May 19.

The video shows how a priest leans across the boy or young man to tell Francis something, at which point the Pope’s expression becomes more serious.

The Pontiff then grips the top of the subject’s head firmly and is seen pushing him down into his wheelchair.

As this is happening Francis recites an intense prayer, and the boy’s mouth drops wide open and he exhales sharply.

Francis’s usual smile then returns and he continues with the traditional and more gentle Sunday greetings for sick or disabled visitors to St Peter’s.

La Repubblica newspaper this morning quoted an exorcism expert has saying: “It was a prayer of liberation from evil or even a real exorcism.”

The leading Roman exorcist Father Gabriele Amorth, said: “Francis is also the Bishop of Rome and like all bishops he’s an exorcist.”

The new Pope has made it quite clear since his election that he believes the Devil, whom refers to as “the Enemy” and “The Prince of this World” is a real force that needs to be fought constantly.

The Vatican has downplayed the incident, filmed by the religious satellite channel TV2000, saying it was simple prayer.

The former Pope, Benedict XVI, never performed an exorcism, Francis is on record as having performed them, however, as was Benedict’s predecessor John Paul II.