The Rite

The Rite

The Making of A Modern Exorcist

Book - 2009
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In The Rite , journalist Matt Baglio uses the astonishingstory of one American priest's training as an exorcist to reveal that the phenomena of possession, demons, the Devil, and exorcism are not merely a remnant of the archaic past, but remain a fearsome power in many people's lives even today.

Father Gary Thomas was working as a parish priest in California when he was asked by his bishop to travel to Rome for training in the rite of exorcism. Though initially surprised, andslightly reluctant, he accepted this call, and enrolled in a new exorcism course at a Vatican-affiliated university, which taught him, among other things, how to distinguish between a genuine possession and mental illness. Eventually he would go on to participate in more than eighty exorcisms as an apprentice to a veteran Italian exorcist. His experiences profoundly changed the way he viewed the spiritual world, and as he moved from rational skeptic to practicing exorcist he came to understand the battle between good and evil in a whole new light. Journalist Matt Baglio had full access to Father Gary over the course of his training, and much of what he learned defies explanation.

The Rite provides fascinating vignettes from the lives of exorcists and people possessed by demons, including firsthand accounts of exorcists at work casting out demons, culminating in Father Gary's own confrontations with the Devil. Baglio also traces the history of exorcism, revealing its rites and rituals, explaining what the Catholic Church really teaches about demonic possession, and delving into such related topics as the hierarchy of angels and demons, satanic cults, black masses, curses, and the various theories used by modern scientists and anthropologists who seek to quantify such phenomena.

Written with an investigative eye that will captivate both skeptics and believers alike, The Rite shows that the truth about demonic possession is not only stranger than fiction, but also far more chilling.

Publisher: New York ; Toronto : Doubleday, c2009.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780385522700
Branch Call Number: 264. 020994092 BAG B
Characteristics: 288 p. : maps


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Mar 19, 2016

A pretty decent overview of modern day exorcism in the catholic faith. I found it most interesting that the majority of priests do not come into the study of exorcism believing in demons or the devil in a real sense but more as an allegorical tale. I also loved that many tools of discernment are used including fake holy water, psychologists, and reading Aristotle in Latin in lieu of the Holy Text. For instance if someone reacts to the Aristotle or tap water then the priest knows they are faking the possession. I don't know where I stand on all this but I do know I am fascinated with the unknown realm of the supernatural and I'm pretty sure I have a few ex wives that are possessed.

Sep 17, 2011

NOT THE MOVIE!?!?!??!?!

Jul 13, 2011

A fascinating read! Baglio does well at offering the reader a neat package of anecdotes and various sorts of expert opinions - supportive and critical - to report on the education of Father Gary as a Catholic exorcist. While some of the jacket comments may be somewhat misleading (i.e., comment about the Vatican denying the initiative to install exorcists in every diocese never seems to be referenced or resolved), the book offers a fairly unobstrusive view of the training and the experiences of Father Gary. The book offers a rich variety of style including history, conversation, personal ruminations, theology and psychology; none of which are indulgent or overbearing. This rich variety, however, proves to be somewhat awkward at times by creating a choppy flow and mildly convoluted timeline. In the final account, this book is a useful read by offering substance for someone whose worldview is amenable to this sort of activity and a challenge for someone who is skeptical.

Dec 31, 2009

This is a great book. The first half gave me a couple nightmares, but I couldn't stop reading it. It gives great insight into a field I knew only from the movies. It read like fiction even though it's non-fiction.

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