Ill. Bishop Carries Out ’Gay Marriage Exorcism’
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed the state’s marriage equality bill into law on Wednesday evening. And while same-sex couples were rejoicing in LGBT progress, one Catholic bishop was battling Satan by holding an exorcism ceremony, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Last week, Illinois Bishop Thomas James Propocki of the Roman Catholic Dioceses of Springfield announced that he planned on performing an exorcism ceremony at the same time Gov. Quinn signed a bill legalizing gay marriage in the state. Yesterday, Propocki made good on his promise and carried out the exorcism Wednesday evening.
During the ceremony, the Tribune reports that the bishop spoke in Latin and said, "Be gone, Satan, father of lies, enemy of human salvation. Give way to Christ."
The newspaper also reports a large crowd of worshipers attended the exorcism, which took place in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception - just a few blocks away from the Capitol in Springfield, Ill., where lawmakers approved the marriage equality bill earlier this month.
"I exorcise you, every unclean sprit, every power of darkness, every incursion of the infernal enemy, every diabolical legion, cohort and faction, in the name and power of our Lord Jesus Christ," Paprocki said.
Paprocki said the exorcism is considered a minor ceremony and pointed out that Satan is cast out during other religious practices, like baptisms and confirmations.
"I’m not saying that anyone involved in the redefinition of marriage is possessed by the devil, which, if that were the case, would require the remedy of a ’major exorcism,’ but all of us are certainly subject to the devil’s evil influences and in need of protection and deliverance from evil," Paprocki said.
During the opening service, which was called "Prayers of Supplication and Exorcism in Reparation for the Sin of Same-Sex Marriage," Paprocki said he did not want to "enter any controversy, and I don’t relish being part of one."
Bishop Thomas James Propocki
"But I have given this matter a great deal of thought and prayer, which has led me to the conviction that God is calling me to speak out and conduct these prayers," he added. He then told his listeners that the "legal redefinition of marriage is contrary to God’s plan" and marriage should be between one man and one woman.
"Our prayers at this time are prompted by the fact that the governor of Illinois today is signing into Illinois law the redefinition of civil marriage, introducing not only an unprecedented novelty into our state law, but also institutionalizing an objectively sinful reality," he said, before going on to say that his statements "are not meant to demonize anyone, but are intended to call attention to the diabolical influences of the devil that have penetrated our culture, both in the state and in the church."
Paprocki also called out lawmakers "responsible for enacting civil same-sex marriage legislation are morally complicit as co-operators in facilitating this grave sin."
"We must pray for forgiveness of these sins and deliverance from this evil which has penetrated our state and our church," he said. He added, the Catholic Church "stands ready to extend God’s mercy to those who confess their sins with true repentance."
Paprocki also said there is a "key point which the secularists are missing: They think that stressing God’s mercy means that sins are no longer sins. On the contrary, God’s mercy is a great gift of grace precisely because sins are sins, and they call for repentance and forgiveness."
In a statement last week, the bishop explained his reasoning for the ceremony:
"The pope’s reference to the ’father of lies’ comes from the Gospel of John, where Jesus refers to the devil as ’a liar and the father of lies.’ So Pope Francis is saying that same-sex ’marriage’ comes from the devil and should be condemned as such," he said. "It is scandalous that so many Catholic politicians are responsible for enabling the passage of this legislation and even twisting the words of the pope to rationalize their actions despite the clear teaching of the church."
Despite Paprocki’s efforts to get the forces of evil out of Illinois, Gov. Quinn still signed the marriage equality bill, making the state the 16th in the country to legalize same-sex marriage.