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Discernment and help for the possessed: part 1

Free will and possession...

“He [satan] possesses the body of any unclean soul, be it man, woman or child.” - Our Lady of the Roses, March 25, 1972

“They will use the body of a human being, one who has fallen out of grace and the light. Any man, woman, or child is susceptible to this possession.” - Our Lady of the Roses,  August 21, 1975 

We are indebted to Fr. Gabriele Amorth, Fr. Malachi Martin, and several other exorcists for providing invaluable information on demonic possession, and for dispelling much of the disinformation surrounding this subject. Dr. Scott Peck’s insights have also been very helpful.

Jesus is the exorcist

Fr. Gabriele Amorth, one of the most famous exorcists in the world, writes, “Redemption is the first, true, great exorcism; Jesus is the first exorcist, and all the power of every battle against the demon derives from him.”[1] Fr. Amorth emphasizes Jesus’ absolute superiority over Satan:

“Jesus clearly reveals his absolute superiority and the defeat of Satan; ‘When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace; but when one stronger than he assails him and overcomes him, he takes away his armor in which he trusted, and divides his spoil’ (Lk 11:21-22). The reference is obvious. The strong man is Satan, who believes himself to be safe. When Jesus comes, the demons complain through the demoniacs: ‘Have you come to destroy us?’ Because Jesus is the stronger one, he overcomes the demons.”[2]

Demons are real

Pope Paul VI stated on November 15, 1972, “What is the greatest need of the Church today? Do not think that our answer is simplistic or superstitious and unreal; one of the greatest needs today is the defense from that evil we call the devil…. He is our number one enemy. He is the tempter par excellence. Thus we know that this dark and perturbing being truly exists and continues to act with treacherous cunning. He is the hidden enemy who sows errors and calamities in human history.”

The demons will continue to test all the baptized until the end of time, with God’s permission. This permission, says St. Irenaeus, is granted “to punish them for their sins, in order better to purify them, and to teach them brotherly charity.”[3]

Our Lady of the Roses warned us on March 15, 1978, "Unless the parents teach their children of the existence of this other world unseen to the human eye, the children cannot then be protected from the attacks of these agents from hell. My child, they are real, they are living, and they have great power. They too possess names as do the high angels in the Kingdom of your God in Heaven."

Human free will and the process of diabolical possession

Dr. Scott Peck, who is the first psychiatrist to have written a book on exorcism, states, “There are two states of being: submission to God and goodness or the refusal to submit to anything beyond one’s own will—which refusal automatically enslaves one to the forces of evil. We must ultimately belong either to God or the devil.”[4]

Mortal sin: a frightful change is wrought 

If the Christian falls into mortal sin, he/she is no longer in the state of sanctifying grace and has allowed the demon to exercise his power in a much greater degree.  Fr. Delaporte writes:

“Every Christian is, by his own free choice, in one or the other of these states: the state of grace—the state of mortal sin. Man, in the state of grace, is beloved by God; he is united to Jesus Christ, as the branch is to the trunk that nourishes it with its sap: in his soul, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost do dwell, lending him a habitual and uninterrupted aid. It is true that devils prowl around him—some of their darts may perchance have wounded him; but he remains living with a Divine life, because God, the true life of every spirit, is in him, and with him. Adopted son of the King of kings, that Christian is free. But as soon as the unhappy being has, by a mortal transgression, willfully broken the bond of charity which united him to God, a frightful change is wrought. God withdraws His habitual aid; the branch severed from the trunk becomes barren. The demon takes the place which the Lord, in departing, left vacant; he reigns there by right of conquest, and if the Saviour’s mercy did not interpose, he will reign there forever. A prodigal child, a rebel, a fugitive, that man is a slave.”[5]

Our freewill cooperation (or lack of cooperation) with God’s grace will determine our eternal destiny:

“The final damnation of the reprobate was occasioned by this: having too long neglected recovering the state of grace, they were urged by the devils from one crime to another, even to the obduracy in which death struck them. To let those spirits of darkness abide in our soul, is to cast ourselves madly into the most evident danger of an eternal slavery: let us never forget this.”[6]

Fr. Conor, an accomplished exorcist mentioned in Fr. Martin’s book, gives general outlines for the process of possession:

“First, the actual entry point, at which the Evil Spirit enters an individual and a decision, however tenuous, is made by the victim to allow that entry.  Then, a stage of erroneous judgments by the possessed in vital matters, as a direct result of the allowed presence of the possessing spirit and apparently in preparation for the next stage.  Third, the voluntary yielding of control by the possessed person to a force or presence he clearly feels is alien to himself and as a result of which the possessed loses control of his will, and so of his decisions and his actions.  Once the third stage is secure, extended control proceeds and may potentially reach the point of completion—perfect possession.  In any individual case, these four stages will dovetail and overlap differently. And, while the process may be swift, more often it seems to take years to accomplish.”[7]  

“At some point during this earliest stage there arrives a delicate moment when each person chooses to consider the particular offer made to him or her. The exorcees in this report agree individually that they made such a choice, and that they had a sense of violating their consciences when they made it, though at the time in some cases it seemed a fairly minor violation.”

- Fr. Malachi Martin, Hostage to the Devil, p. 437

The diabolical invitation
Among the five possessed persons mentioned by Fr. Martin in his book Hostage to the Devil, “All the exorcees here mentioned admit in retrospect that they knew—whether they acknowledged it vaguely or explicitly—that the source of the offered help was neither a human being nor any religious source. The source was always vague, always reassuring. It always alienated them from their surroundings and from those nearest to them.”[8]  All five of the possessed also sensed a violation of their consciences when they accepted the diabolical invitation: “At some point during this earliest stage there arrives a delicate moment when each person chooses to consider the particular offer made to him or her. The exorcees in this report agree individually that they made such a choice, and that they had a sense of violating their consciences when they made it, though at the time in some cases it seemed a fairly minor violation.”[9]

According to Fr. Martin, “possession is an ongoing process. A process that affects the two faculties of the soul: the mind, by which an individual receives and internalizes knowledge. And the will, by which an individual chooses to act upon that knowledge.” [10] He describes an “aspiring vacuum” which is formed, making the person an easy prey for demonic possession.  He writes:

“In the context of possession, all disposing factors produced within a person a condition of those two faculties of soul—mind and will—that is most aptly described as an aspiring vacuum. Vacuum, because there is created an absence of clearly defined and humanly acceptable concepts for the mind. Aspiring, because there is a corresponding absence of clearly defined and humanly acceptable goals for the will.”[11]

Fr. Martin explains that the light of reason is progressively snuffed out for the possessed soul and “into that vacuum the Evil Spirit pours its own light and knowledge.”[12] Similarly, Our Lord has told us in the Bayside messages, “Keep pure and holy thoughts entering your mind, for it is also the focal point of entrance for the evil spirits.” (Jesus, November 24, 1973)

Dr. Scott Peck agrees with Fr. Martin that the human will is the key to understanding possession. He has written the first book on possession by a psychiatrist, entitled Glimpses of the Devil. In this book, Dr. Peck gives detailed accounts of two exorcisms.  An article by Christianity Today reported:

“Following Martin, Peck believes the human will is key to understanding both possession and exorcism. People make choices that have consequences. One patient chose to believe her father’s lies when he abused her sexually as a 12-year-old. The patient in the other case study avoided talk about her childhood, but the starting point of possession may have had to do with an evil book that fascinated her. There is always some act of the will, however small, that opens the self to possession.”[13]

Fr. Amorth makes it very clear that possession does not deprive the victim of freedom, except in times of acute crisis:

“No matter what the origins, possession does not deprive us of freedom except during times of acute crisis, when we are not responsible for our words and actions. Freedom of the will, nevertheless, remains. We are still free to commit good or evil actions, to sanctify ourselves or to damn ourselves.”[14]

From partial to total possession
Once a person has opened his will to demonic influence, the demons will begin to build strongholds within that person. An assistant to a Polish priest exorcist stated that serious sins are like broken windows; our soul is no longer secure. It is through these broken windows, openings into the house of our soul, that the demons gain entrance.  Fr. Martin explains that demonic influence and control will quickly grow more expansive if not firmly resisted:

“If the victim, by now partially possessed, does not withdraw consent and succeed in freeing himself, with help or by dint of his own strength of will and resistance, he will arrive at one sure, critical moment. He will be presented with an increasing and finally unremitting pressure to allow an ‘inner control’ by an alien force. This control will affect thoughts, emotions, acts of will, intentions, likes and dislikes. Each of our exorcees had this experience. Each felt an eerie ‘pressure’ to allow ‘someone else’ to give them directives; and that ‘someone else’ was ‘inside’ them in some way or other. The pressure was not physical, just as the presence inside them was not physical. There were physical results when they tried to resist that pressure, however. Once they yielded, they started to receive ‘instructions’—ready-made judgments and attitudes arose in them, even words on their lips and actions in their limbs.”[15]

“When dealing with evil possession, tricks are the norm, and much prayer is needed to receive the grace of discernment.”

 - Fr. Gabriele Amorth, An Exorcist Tells His Story, p. 121

The demonic strongholds built within the possessed weaken the victim from recognizing that he/she has been captured, and to prevent friends and relatives from rescuing the possessed from the trap he/she has fallen into. Demonic walls and defensives are erected. Demons will seek to camouflage their presence as much as possible. Fr. Amorth notes that demons go to any length to avoid detection, and they try to hide during an exorcism as well. Fr. Martin writes, “The light and knowledge of the Evil Spirit has its own effects, striking, immediate and self-protective. It puts the possessed on their guard against circumstances, people, places, and objects closely associated with God and Jesus. It will lead the possessed to avoid situations that constitute a threat to the possessing power of the Evil Spirit.”[16]  An American exorcist said something similar, that normally the demon will show itself only when its possessive rights are being threatened. A significant intervention by a friend or family member on behalf of the possessed can trigger the “crisis”, one of the hallmark signs of a possessed person. The demon has been partially flushed out when it attempts to sabotage the intervention through a “crisis”. 

Fr. Martin also notes the extraordinary and dramatic changes the possession will effect “in the judgments, principles, and outlook of the possessed, together with an ever-growing sense of loss of self-control, even to the point of a loss of awareness of one’s actions.”[17] 

As the victim continues to cooperate with his/her possession, demonic control will become more complete. “If extended control continues unabated, if total consent is achieved,” writes Fr. Martin, “then total (or perfect) possession is achieved.”[18]  Father Jayachandra, a priest and exorcist from India explains: “Partial possession means in a certain part of the body. Full possession means the devil takes control over the consciousness of the person. It uses the mouth of the person to speak. It uses the hands and legs of the person to do violence. It uses the mouth of the person to abuse and blaspheme.”[19]

Contrary to common belief, possessed people can and do function reasonably efficiently in their jobs and in society in general. Fr. Martin makes this sad observation:

“Actually, the more perfect the possession, the less likely any disturbance in one’s functioning on the level of human being. Jay Beedem, whom Father Mark [an exorcist] seemed to uncover as one of the perfectly possessed, was a model of cool efficiency.”[20] 

“Many demons can only be dispelled by much fast and penance, the greatest source being prayer.” - Jesus, December 31, 1973

“Keep pure and holy thoughts entering your mind, for it is also the focal point of entrance for the evil spirits.” - Jesus, November 24, 1973

“Demons from hell shall enter into the body of any man, woman, or child who has fallen from grace.” - Our Lady of the Roses, June 16, 1977

[1] Fr. Gabriele Amorth, An Exorcist: More Stories, p. 42.
[2] Ibid., p. 37.
[3] Fr. Gabriele Amorth, An Exorcist Tells His Story, p. 178.
[4] C.S. Lewis, “Christianity and Culture” contained in Christian Reflections, Walter Hooper, ed. Grand Rapids, Mich.: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1967; quoted by M. Scott Peck, M.D., in Glimpses of the Devil: A Psychiatrist’s Personal Accounts of Possession, Exorcism, and Redemption, p. xvi.
[5] Father Delaporte of the Society of Mercy, The Devil: Does He Exist and What Does He Do?, pp. 150-151.
[6] Ibid., p. 152.
[7] Fr. Malachi Martin, Hostage to the Devil: The Possession and Exorcism of Five Living Americans, p. 436.
[8] Ibid., p. 437.
[9] Ibid., p. 437.
[10] Ibid., p. xx.
[11] Ibid., p. xxi.
[12] Ibid., p. 440.
[13] “Scott Peck vs. Satan,” Christianity Today, February 2005.
[14]Amorth, An Exorcist: More Stories, p. 181.
[15] Hostage to the Devil, p. 439.
[16] Ibid., p. 440.
[17] Ibid., pp. 440-441.
[18] Ibid., p. 441.
[19] Tom Hoopes, “The Dark Backward: Demons in the Real World,” Crisis Magazine, November 4, 2003.
[20] Hostage to the Devil, p. 410.

Our Lady of the Roses amazing Bayside Prophecies... http://www.tldm.org/../Bayside/ 
These prophecies came from Jesus, Mary, and the saints to Veronica Lueken at Bayside, NY, from 1968 to 1995.

"Yes, My child, you see that I am the true Source of Life. For when you come to Me, you will nourish your soul. You will nourish your eternal being. You will learn, My child, in due time that the Bread of life will sustain you without earthly food. Man must return to fast and penance. Many demons can only be dispelled by much fast and penance, the greatest source being prayer.
     "You must keep a constant vigilance of prayer in your homes and the houses of your God. You must also recognize the faces of evil about you: those who parade themselves as angels of light but are truly ravenous wolves, agents of hell. They seek the destruction of souls." - Jesus, December 31, 1973 

"I give you the greatest of hope in your world of darkness that the victory shall be with Heaven. Know that the greatest trials suffered are but a small forfeiture for the great glory of being victorious over the adversaries loosed upon your earth. They come as creatures of night, but they must possess the bodies of humans. Understand this in the supernatural, My children: no man, woman, or child of reasoning is free from the attacks of satan." - Jesus, September 7, 1976 

"Unless the parents teach their children of the existence of this other world unseen to the human eye, the children cannot then be protected from the attacks of these agents from hell. My child, they are real, they are living, and they have great power. They, too, possess names as do the high angels in the Kingdom of your God in Heaven."
- Our Lady, March 15, 1978

"My child, you will work with much haste. The time grows short. The enemy has entered into your government. Pray much for them. The demons possess many. They come in great multitudes, for they know the strength of prayer in your area. Should this be removed, your city, your state, and your country will go through a period of great suffering never seen before in this country." - Jesus, September 13, 1974 

"There are many agents of hell loosed upon earth now. They have entered into the House of God, and they possess the body of many men to do the will of satan. You must not abandon the sacramentals that I have given you through the Father for your protection and your salvation." - Our Lady, August 14, 1973 

Be knowledgeable, My children, and understand that satan will not come to you as himself. He possesses the body of any unclean soul, be it man, woman, or child. I repeat to you now: all parents will be held responsible for the fall of their children's souls. Give them a good foundation, and when they are subjected to the storms of evil, they will not crack and crumble under the onslaught." - Our Lady, March 25, 1972 

"Michael must be returned to My Son's House. The demons must be cast from My Son's House. They have taken possession of many to do the will of Lucifer." - Our Lady, February 10, 1973 

"I repeat Myself, as in the past, My children. The demons have a form, but they do not use this form unless the Eternal Father gives you the knowledge and insight into the supernatural to observe them in action. They will use the body of a human being, one who has fallen out of grace and the light. Any man, woman, or child is susceptible to this possession." - Our Lady, August 21, 1975 

"My heart is torn now at the full acceleration of the evil in your country, your cities, and your world. My Mother made it quite clear to you that mankind is not beyond possession by satan. The human body and the human souls now are being corrupted by evil man through the influence of satan, My children. You must learn to avoid the faces of evil that come to you. You must do all in your human power with the graces that will be given to you freely to cast off the inclination to evil." - Jesus, August 5, 1977 

"He has an army of ogres wandering now throughout your country and all of the countries of the world. They are in possession of great power, so wear your sacramentals and protect your children and your households. Learn the use every day of holy water throughout your household. Insist, even with obstructions, insist that your children always wear a sacramental. One day they will understand that they will repel the demons." - Our Lady, September 13, 1977

"My children of God, have no fear. You will keep your sacramentals about you. You will keep your children's souls guarded, for none shall be attacked who are in the state of grace.
     "Be ye known now, it has been loosed on earth
satan; satan, the king of darkness, satan, the master of deceit. His time is short, but he is loose.
     "He entered into the body of a man in 1975, a man who gave himself to him in the practice of occult. He entered into the body of this man, as he cannot roam without the body. He will enter in, when he has finished his mission, into another body. And you will pray a constant vigilance of prayer that he is removed from your country." - St. Michael, August 13, 1977 

"Satan was a murderer and a liar from the beginning, and satan has been allowed upon your earth to separate the sheep from the goats. My children, he is the master of deceit. I must tell you as your Mother, that unless you remain in the state of grace, you cannot recognize him. He is a man of a thousand faces. He has great power: he can throw his voice, My children, into animals and even into the air. Unless you give your children a firm foundation in knowledge of their Faith, they will fall to his subtleties, My children." - Our Lady, September 7, 1977 

"Satan is loosed upon earth, but he knows that his time is growing short. Therefore, he will make a concerted effort to destroy those who are not in the state of grace, so that he can take them into hell. That is why, My children, you must always wear a medal, your armor about your neck. And the best armor of all is the Scapular, the Rosary, the St. Benedict medal, and also your newest armor: Our Lady of the Roses, Mary Help of Mothers. My child and My children, I tell you this because you cannot do without any of them. At this time, all armor is needed for the fight ahead." - Our Lady, May 17, 1986 

"Any man, woman, or child of the age of reasoning who has fallen from grace shall become a consort of satan."
- Jesus, November 20, 1975

Directives from Heaven...  http://www.tldm.org/directives/directives.htm 

D28 - Hell  PDF Logo PDF
D44 - The Occult 
D149 - Satanism, Part 1  PDF Logo PDF
D150 - Satanism, Part 2 
D151 - Possession
D152 - Angel of light
D153 - Astrology
D245 - Demons PDF LogoPDF
D260 - Satan, the Deceiver of Mankind PDF LogoPDF 


Discernment and help for the possessed, part 2 (common misconceptions about possession)

The Ouija board and demonic possession

Pope Paul VI on confronting the devil's power

World famous exorcist Fr. Gabriele Amorth: The devil is behind Harry Potter, seducing children

Vatican's new rite of exorcism called "a blunt weapon" by world's most famous exorcist

David Berkowitz (the "Son of Sam") confirms he was possessed, as Our Lady of the Roses said he was

Demonic possession

The lure of the occult

Spiritual warfare: the occult has demonic influence

John Paul II recommended praying the St. Michael exorcism


Exorcism: Marta the possessed, Spero News, April 11, 2005

The new rite of exorcism: the influence of the evil one, Latin Mass magazine, Summer 2002

A woman possessed?

Dr. Scott Peck vs. Satan: A well-known psychiatrist describes and analyzes two exorcisms, Christianity Today, February 2005

Priest who is expert on exorcism warns on a single visit to fortuneteller

Exorcism: the facts

The reality of satan and the victory of Jesus and Mary

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