Servizio Informazione Religiosa is reporting on the statement made by Father Bamonte during his address to participants in the Plenary Assembly of the Congregation for the Clergy that took place last month in Rome.
“Those in charge of training seminarians, in light of the Gospel and of the Church teachings, should instruct them about the real existence, substance and nature of the demonic world,” Father Bamonte said.
There is too little attention paid by seminaries and theological faculties to the nature of evil, even to the point of denial by some professors who are responsible for the spiritual, pastoral and theological formation of seminarians, Father said.
He also observed the “widespread ‘ignorance’ of these phenomena which severely undermines the training of seminarians and candidates to religious life."
It makes them “unable to guarantee a profound spiritual direction – after they are ordained priests and have to carry out all of their pastoral duties; unable to offer the faithful a suitable catechesis on the devil’s activities; and unable to address the serious problems related to the rise in occult practices we have seen in recent decades, which has opened the door for the devil’s ever more virulent and powerful action in society,” Father said.
It would be good for “seminarians to be able to meet with an exorcist priest at least once during their formation so that they may listen to his testimony, in a proper manner, and learn about the ministry he carries out”.
In this way, “the figure of the exorcist priest would become more familiar to would-be priests, thereby paving the way for a more fruitful cooperation in the future between non-exorcist priests and exorcist priests, for the good of our brothers and sisters afflicted by the evil one.”
Priests who are familiar with the workings of the occult are indeed difficult to find. Our next blog will give a few pointers on where to go when in need of a priest for help with an occult-related problem.