Updated: Aug 31, 2022
["The Temptation of Saint Anthony," Lucas van Leyden, c 1530]
Baphomet, a high ranking demon, is the head possessor in a particularly nasty case. The afflicted young woman is regularly assaulted and manipulated by demons. The exorcism sessions are intense and full of swearing, yelling, growling, lewd gestures, and vomiting.
At the end of the most recent session, the young woman came back to herself after being in an active demonic state for almost an hour. The Exorcist asked, as he typically does at the end of every session, "How are you? What happened during the session?" She said to the Exorcist, "Baphomet is angry with you. He said that he is going to get you tonight at midnight."
This is not the first time the demons have threatened one of us. Sometimes they will tell the Exorcist when they will attack and at other times they leave it unknown. But our experience is that when they say they will attack the priest, they will indeed do so. It is not a bluff. However, the Evil One is not allowed to do any more than God allows and He always provides the graces to overcome any demonic assaults.
"Forewarned is forearmed." A few hours before midnight, another priest exorcist kindly prayed some deliverance prayers over the priest. This had the effect of somewhat blunting the coming attack. He then commended himself to the protection of the Blessed Virgin, sprinkled holy water around the room, and went to bed.
Around midnight, he was awakened by an intense agitation and temptations. These were followed by feelings of utter darkness. Recognizing the source of these strong mental attacks, the Exorcist then said three times out loud: "I offer these assaults for the liberation of the afflicted person."
Instantly, the assaults lessened in intensity. Not only is this offering helpful for the afflicted person, it also impresses upon the demons, once again, that all of their efforts are self-defeating. Everything they do ultimately redounds to the glory of God and furthers God’s Kingdom.
The attacks did not dissipate completely until a couple of hours had passed. Then, the priest went back to bed and slept soundly, having once again experienced the surpassing power of Christ and his defeat of Satan.
Giving into fear of Satan and his minions only empowers the demons. Faith is more than simply acknowledging that God exists. It implies trusting in God and in the victory of Jesus Christ. We surrender ourselves completely into God's hands.
No priest will long survive the sometimes intense spiritual combat of an exorcist's calling without such a personal surrender.