Pope Francis has advised priests who hear troubled confessions from parishioners to not hesitate to call on the services of an exorcist.
A good confessor has to be very discerning, particularly when he has to deal with “real spiritual disorders”, the 80-year-old pontiff told priests at a Vatican training seminar on the art of hearing believers recount their sins.
Disorders could have their roots in all manner of circumstances, including supernatural ones, he suggested.
In such circumstances the confessor “must not hesitate to refer to exorcists … chosen with great care and prudence”.
First off there is NO situation that would warrant having some blabbering fool standing over a troubled person while reading Bible verses and douching them with holy water.
All of that should be left behind in the 18th century where it belongs.
Secondly mental illness is not something that a priest is capable of diagnosing without the assistance of a trained psychiatrist.
Trust me, no good psychiatrist is going to write our a prescription for exorcism.
Thirdly I actually once had a client who had suffered through an exorcism, and I can tell you from first hand experience that the trauma created by such an experience can be quite debilitating.
What statements like this tell me is that as progressive as this new Pope seems to be sometimes, he is still stuck in a primitive mindset that makes him erratic and dangerous.