Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Monsignor Pope on Exorcism Prayers in the Baptismal Rite, and how they might be reinstituted

I saw this in BadgerCatholics twitter feed and thought it was interesting because I had said something about it a month ago on a message board and was rebuked for even entertaining the possibility that the removal of the exorcism as it had been done in the old rite was foolish and that it should be re-instituted into the whole sacramental rite.

A short snippit:

 Most significant among the changes in the Rite that occurred in 1969,(And what I like to concentrate on here) was the removal of the exorcisms, four in all. And these were not mild exorcisms at all! They were weighty and imperative (i.e. commanding). The devil is really given his walking papers; he is commanded in no uncertain terms that he must depart, recognizing his sentence as having been defeated by Christ who claims this child now for his own.Critics at the time argued that the prayers seem to treat the infant as though he or she was possessed. And for this, and other reasons, the exorcisms were removed from the baptismal rites of the Church. The new right does feature a prayer that is technically referred to as an exorcism. But the prayers is so mild-mannered, really more in the form of a mere blessing, that I doubt the celebrant of baptism really thinks of it as an exorcism, (let alone any demons understand that they are being commanded to leave). Here’s the current prayer that is, in the rite, referred to as the exorcism:
Almighty and ever-living God, you sent your only Son in to the world to cast out the power of Satan, spirit of evil, to rescue man from the kingdom of darkness, and bring him into the kingdom of light. We pray for this child: set him free from original sin, make him a temple of your glory, and send your Holy Spirit to dwell with him. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

Read the rest HERE 


  1. "Critics at the time argued that the prayers seem to treat the infant as though he or she was possessed."

    On the other hand, those prayers might have been directed at the Devil in a way analogous to a then-known paternal discipline technique: "That's for nothing; now try something."

    1. im a little confused what you mean by that... expand on that thought if you would kindly... thanks