Jesus cast out evil spirits in Scripture, the Apostles continued this work, and exorcism continues to be part of the regular compassionate pastoral care of souls today in the Catholic Church.

The power and authority to cast out demons is a special ministry. The prayers of exorcism are considered to be sacramentals, sacred signs instituted by the Church against the power of the devil.

Demonic activity can include infestations of locations or objects, physical vexations or oppression of people, and mental obsession. Possession, where a demon treats a body as if it is their own, requires a major exorcism which may only be performed by a bishop or a designated priest.

A person who participates in the occult or satanic practices, or who willingly does things contrary to the Catholic faith becomes more vulnerable to harrassment by demons.

Simple or minor forms of exorcism can be found in Rite of Baptism and adult initiation into the Church, as well as in prayers that can be used by Catholics to overcome the influence of sin and evil.

Determining the need for an exorcism always includes evaluating the mental stablity of the person and ruling out psychiatric or neurologic disorders.

The four signs of demonic possession of a person are the ability to speak and understand languages they have not heard before, superhuman strength, knowledge about hidden things not revealed, and aversion to sacred objects, prayers, or names.

Evil spirits can dwell within us:

Exorcisms still happen:

Exorcisms are real:

In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit; he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” Jesus rebuked him and said, “Quiet! Come out of him!” The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him.

Mark 1: 23-26

An exorcism is a fight:

Experienced exorcists have nothing to fear:

When the Church asks publicly and authoritatively in the name of Jesus Christ that a person or object be protected against the power of the Evil One and withdrawn from his dominion, it is called exorcism. Jesus performed exorcisms and from Him the Church has received the power and office of exorcizing. In a simple form, exorcism is performed at the celebration of Baptism. The solemn exorcism, called “a major exorcism,” can be performed only by a priest and with the permission of the bishop. The priest must proceed with prudence, strictly observing the rules established by the Church. Exorcism is directed at the expulsion of demons or to the liberation from demonic possession through the spiritual authority which Jesus entrusted to his Church. Illness, especially psychological illness, is a very different matter; treating this is the concern of medical science. Therefore, before an exorcism is performed, it is important to ascertain that one is dealing with the presence of the Evil One, and not an illness.

Catechism of the Catholic Church 1673

A famous case of possession:

The real work of casting out demons:

The Devil is at the origin of the first misfortune of humanity; he was the subtle and fatal tempter of the first sin, original sin. From that fall of Adam the Devil acquired a certain empire over man, from which only the Redemption of Christ can free us. It is history that continues to this day: we remember the exorcisms of Baptism and the frequent references of Sacred Scripture and the liturgy to the aggressive and oppressive “power of darkness”. He is enemy number one, he is the tempter par excellence. Thus we know that this dark and disturbing Being really exists, and that he still acts with treacherous cunning; it is the hidden enemy who sows errors and misfortunes in human history.

Pope Paul VI, General Audience, 15 November 1972

A ministry of love and compassion:

Distinguishing between possession and mental illness:

The Truth, Goodness, and Beuaty of the Catholic Church

Returning home to the Eucharist:

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