7 Interesting Facts about Exorcisms

  1. Every demon has a “nemesis.” According to Fr. Ripperger, the “nemesis” can be Our Lord (Lucifer’s nemesis), God the Father (Satan’s nemesis), Our Lady (the Immaculate Heart is Beelzebub’s nemesis), or a particular saint (eg. Saint Catherine of Sienna: she is the nemesis to the “noonday devil,” the demon of acedia).
  2. Demonic possession is the proper effect of mortal sin. The is truly astounding! It is only God’s mercy that blocks this effect from happening almost every time. Wow!
  3. What homily does Satan hate the most? St. Alphonsus Liguori told the story of one exorcism when the devil revealed which sermon, above all others, he despises the most.  He said, “Being compelled by exorcisms, the devil once confessed that of all sermons, that which displeased him most was the sermon on avoiding the occasions of sin: and justly; for the devil laughs at all the resolutions and promises of penitent sinners who remain in the occasion of sin.” (63-4).
  4. Satan’s Organized Crime Network: Under Satan, there is a council of 5 demons who execute his commands: Baal (abortion), Asmodeus (homosexuality for men), Lilith & Leviathan (homosexuality for women), and Baphomet (fornication). The sins which are attributed to these five demons are fornication, homosexuality, and abortion, which are firmly settled in our culture.
  5. Demons can cause thunderstorms: Demons are permitted to occupy all aspects of the natural world:  the air, water, areas underground, dwelling places, the atmosphere, etc.  Fr. Ripperger shared a story that demonstrates how demons can also occupy the air in the atmosphere and can stir up violent storms.  In Tulsa, Oklahoma, one summer, the area was warned to take cover as two tornadoes touched down nearby.  Instead, Father decided to pray an exorcism against storms and tempests.  He then checked the news and heard, as he described it, “the newscasters baffled at the fact that the tornadoes just vanished from the air.” (138).
  6. Demons can possess groups of people: Fr. Gabriele Amorth said in an interview that the devil can possess groups of people, not just individuals.  He said, “For example, I am convinced that the Nazis were all possessed by the devil. If you think about what types [of evil] like Stalin, Hitler did … certainly they were possessed by the devil.” (12).
  7. Who’s more powerful: Your Guardian Angel or Satan? “According to St. Thomas Aquinas, a man’s guardian angel is more powerful than even the Devil himself.  This is due to the power of grace, which was granted to the holy angels after the test that accompanied the first instance of their existence” (8). With this in mind, it’s good not only to have a devotion to our own guardian angel but also that of our family members, and the additional guardian angel given to us at either our wedding date or our ordination date.
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