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KOTA KINABALU – The Exorcism and Deliverance seminar drew 200 participants on 24-25 Feb 2017 at the Sacred Heart Parish Centre here.
The seminar, organised by the Archdiocesan Service Team of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR), was facilitated by Father Charles Chiew of Keningau.
Father Chiew was sent by Bishop Cornelius Piong of Keningau to take up courses on exorcism in Rome in the past few years and has been conducting such seminars in some of the arch/dioceses in Malaysia.
Basing himself on the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC # 1673), Canon Law (#1172), and the Liturgy (exorcism prayers), Father Chiew clarified that exorcism is done by the priest while deliverance is done by lay people. He said that an exorcist is a person who listens and tries to understand each case, who leads the person to God, and who reassures and calms the person concerned.
The priest also showed the hierarchy of angels in Scriptures: (1) seraphim [Is 6:2] (2) cherubim [Ez 10:20] (3) thrones [Col 1:16] (4) dominations [Col 1:16] (5) principalities [Col 1:16] (6) powers [Col 1:16] (7) virtues [Eph 1:21] (8) archangels [Rev 12:7] (9) angels [Gen 19:1].
The participants were enlightened on the reality of spiritual warfare waged by Satan (fallen archangel) and his fallen angels (Rev 12). He said that since the angels were created before the material world, they could inhabit the material world in any form. Evil spirits cannot multiply themselves as they have no bodies so they seek to lure human beings into becoming like themselves (cf Mk 12:25).
He taught them how to recognise the works of evil in their midst: (1) possession [a. strange/foul language b. superhuman strength c. capacity to know hidden things] (2) vexation (3) obsession (4) infestation (5) physical disorder (6) demonic dependence. The obvious sign is the aversion to holy things, people and places.
He also told them what sacramentals (blessed salt, holy water, oil, crucifixes, candles, St Benedict medals) are effective in driving out evils spirits. He blessed these items brought by the participants at the end of the session.
While some went home after lunch on the final day, others remained for the training session for those involved in the deliverance ministry. Some shared their experiences in this area. A video clip on how a deliverance session was conducted in Islam and in a Christian denomination in Indonesia was screened. The participants were also shown how a possessed person should be held during a deliverance session.