Message from the Director to Trainees of the St. Padre Pio Center for Deliverance Counseling
This is a papal fidelity site. Loyal and Obedient to the Current Pope and to the Magisterium United With Him. Return to Training Index Training to be a Spiritual Warrior Counsellor and Investigator Message from the Director Introduction The activity of Satan in the past 100-120 years has increased exponentially. By 1994 the Judeo-Christian worldview that had predominated Western Culture since AD 314 was replaced by a Post-Modern worldview hostile to Christianity and to all God's children. We are at war!
As with all wars there are casualties. The casualties may involve otherwise orthodox Christians living without the excellence and fullness of the Christian worldview that our Lord intends us to live, or involve delving into doctrinal error, or may lead to various levels of bondage, harassment, and even possession. The Culture Wars spawned by the Post-Modern Worldview leaves all of us a caualty. We are all born into and live in this worldview that is fundamentally hostile to the Christian worldview. We may often find ourselves, therefore, thinking in ways that are inconsistent with the Christian worldview. This is the subtlety of spiritual warfare — if the evil one cannot get us to abandon the faith, or to rebel into heterodoxy or heresy, he will try to rob us of the victory in Christ that we ought to experience. Healing from these sort of casualties is found in obedience to the Church and ...fanning into flame the gift that is within you. By appropriating the victory of Christ and the life of the Spirit we may experience the fullness and excellence of all that Christ wants us to be. Spiritual Warfare may also lead to more serious casualty ranging from bondage, harassment by demons, to serious demonization (possession ). The more serious levels of demonization may be beyond a person healing themselves through prayer and devotion. Deliverance Counselors and healers may help these people. Those casualties who are affected at the highest and most severe levels of demonization (commonly, but misleadingly, called possession ) will need the formal Rite of Exorcism (Solemn Exorcism). Solemn Exorcism can only be performed by a priest appointed by a bishop and even then only with the Bishop's expressed permission. The numbers of Solemn Exorcisms, although still relatively rare, have increased in recent decades. What is alarming, however, is that lessor forms of demonization that do not qualify for a Solemn Exorcism, have increased markedly. There are perhaps 10,000's, maybe 100,000's, of people suffering from levels of demonization that are severe enough to require the help of Deliverance Counsellors, but not severe enough to qualify for a Solemn Exorcism. Unfortunately, there is no credible formal training for Deliverance Counsellors. Seminaries do not deal with this issue. Thus training becomes an exercise in self-study and hopefully finding a mentor with experience in this area, and the instructions in the Rite of Exorcism itself. There are some training efforts among charismatic Catholics, but the approach of these efforts are questionable, often misguided, and are generally not comprehensive. In 1993, however, the International Association of Exorcists was formed. Membership is restricted and exclusive. A priest must have permission of his bishop to join. This association may begin to provide very needed training, support, and advice to those priests who are officially appointed as Exorcists. But this still does not meet the need for the average priest and the laity who deal with levels of demonization that do not qualify for a solemn exorcism. Unlike a Solemn Exorcism that has a specific rubric promulgated officially by the Church by which priest follows in doing an exorcism, in Deliverance Counselling there is no such formal guidance by which all Counsellors may follow. This has caused much confusion and widely differing approaches among those called into Deliverance Counselling. Without a standardization of methodology and a training that painstakingly brings a person through academic, clinical, spiritual instruction, and direction in personal spiritual formation and growth, abuses and uneven results are bound to be the norm. Perhaps because of this lack of proper training and understanding among Deliverance and Healing apostolates the Church has observed many abuses and even harm not only to the clients of these groups but to the counsellors themselves. The Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith thus issued two instructions on this matter. The first was in 1985 dealing specifically with deliverance work: Inde Ab Aliquot Annis. The second pertinent document deals with prayers for healing was issued in 2000: Instruction on Prayers for Healing It is critically important for those in the Deliverance or Healing apostolates to read these binding instructions from the Vatican. The lack of training in seminaries, the lack of priests or laity knowledgeable and experienced in doing Deliverance Counselling, has caused a great gap of people not receiving the help they need. Our Community has been called by God, we believe, to fill this gap and provide not only counselling with demonized people, and investigations of hauntings, but also to provide a specific and comprehensive course of instruction to train eligible people to be Deliverance Counsellors. This section of the SPCDC website will provide information about what it means to be a Deliverance Counsellor, eligibility requirements for admittance to our training, an outline of the training curricula, and an application for those interested in becoming students in our training program. Thank you for your interest and may God richly bless you. Return to Training Index