According to Orlita, a number of Catholic bishops would like to have at least one or two exorcists in their diocese. However, this is often not possible. According to Orlita, the bishops complain that they do not have suitable people among their priests to perform this service.
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“It is not enough to have a good theological training and to be a good priest to be an exorcist – it takes something more,” the new AIE president said in an interview.
According to Orlita, some believers do not have a clear idea of who the exorcist is and what he can do. “There are also people who approach us as if we are good wizards, Catholic wizards,” Orlita said. According to him, exorcists have the task of increasing the “quality of Christian life” of believers.
In the Catholic Church, only bishops or priests who have been authorized by the bishop can practice exorcism. According to Orlita, who was born in 1970 in Ostrava, he became an exorcist about 15 years ago and now works for the Brno diocese.
According to information on its website, the International Association of Exorcists is the only similar association officially recognized by the Vatican. It has approximately 900 members who are active and auxiliary exorcists. About half of the association’s members work in Italy, according to the association’s data, there are 13 of them in the Czech Republic. The exorcism ceremony is based on the Catholic Church’s belief that Satan and other evil spirits are active in the world.
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According to church historian Francis Young, the practice of exorcism has accompanied the Catholic Church almost since its beginnings. In the past, it enjoyed alternating popularity with believers and church dignitaries. According to the historian, exorcism was the least practiced in the 1960s, but then, thanks to the activities of conservative priests and believers, its popularity increased.
According to Young, the growing influence of bishops from Africa, Asia and Latin America in the Catholic Church is currently helping the spread of this practice. In these areas, Catholics face pressure from competing evangelical and Pentecostal movements.
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