Everyone's Guide to Demons and Spiritual Warfare, by Ron Phillips, simple, powerful tools for outmaneuvering Satan -- a general-Christian book that shows in anointed fashion that we are not powerless against demons. This is a fascinating, basic training manual covering a wide breadth of topics to do with evil attack and staving those attacks off! click here



It rolled -- roiled -- on this week, the raucous times for our Church.

On Wednesday came a surprise announcement that the Vatican was reining in leadership of most U.S. nuns, after a lengthy period of visitations to convents and other facilities in the U.S. indicated serious doctrinal issues, including obedience. It was a surprise in that at the conclusion of the visitation an official had indicated all had gone well and the nuns were doing fine; there had been no sign of crisis.

That was followed Thursday (419/12) by the allegation at an abuse trial in Philadelphia that an active bishop in West Virginia had relations as a priest with a teenage boy in the late 1970s. The bishop has strongly denied it, describing the charges "unbelievable and shocking."

The attack on our Church continues as so many in prophetic circles expected. Like Scripture says, God first chastises those who are close to Him. A purification this is.

Not all the accused, as we know, have likewise protested their innocence. We certainly take the bishop, Michael J. Bransfield, of Charleston, at his word, and we have long wondered how many priests have been falsely accused, particularly by those who claim "repressed" memories. The devil can instill such thoughts. Of course, he also can be behind the authentic cases. Let us recall the unofficial second "secret" of LaSalette in France, whereby the seer (whose first part was accepted by the Church) claimed she had been told on September 19 in 1846 that some priests, "by their wicked lives, by their irreverence and their impiety in the celebration of the holy mysteries, by their love of money, their love of honors and pleasures," had become "cesspools of impurity." (It also said that "in convents, the flowers of the Church will decompose and the devil will make himself like the king of all hearts. May those in charge of religious communities be on their guard against the people they must receive, for the devil will resort to all his evil tricks to introduce sinners into religious orders, for disorder and the love of carnal pleasures will be spread all over the earth.")

It added that many convents would no longer be houses of God, "but the grazing-grounds of Asmodeas and his like" (the major demon known from the deuterocanonical Book of Tobit).

When the first, positive comments were made after that study of nuns, we were confused in light of the many cases of New Age practices (Asmodeas) in retreat houses and convents. [You can see our initial coverage from six years ago of the occult infiltration here; left, image of girl with legs crossed in yoga in a Blessed Mother grotto at a Dominican college.] The sex abuse and nun crises are a form of persecution but it is excellent to see the cleansing. Proverbs: "Stripes that wound cleanse away evil; And strokes reach the innermost parts" (20:30). Persecution purifies.

We see this and thank God for purifying us (it has certainly been to an extent that went beyond what many expected) and for teaching us of the need -- in our Church, in our societies, and in our own lives -- to expel demons.

That's the subject of a book we find extremely useful and recommend for your bookshelf: They Shall Expel Demons, by Derek Prince. For we must know our enemies. "We do not normally see them, but we recognize their presence by certain characteristic actions," wrote Prince, a famous deliverance expert. "Demons entice. Demons harass. Demons torture. Demons compel. Demons enslave. Demons cause addictions. Demons defile. Demons deceive. Demons attack the physical body." The battlefield is the mind.  "Usually the people who rely most on their mental abilities are those most open to this kind of demonic attack," says the book. We need to rely instead on prayer. "I have found that virtually every form of compulsiveness sexual aberration is the outcome of demonic pressure. This would include masturbation, pornography, fornication, adultery, homosexuality, lesbianism, effeminacy, and all sorts of perversion concerning what Paul says, 'It is shameful even to speak of those things which are done... in secret' [Ephesians 5:12]."

In our Church, demons convinced many seminarians and priests that they are homosexual and caused them to burn with a lust that was preternatural.

But other priests -- heroic ones -- have given us the tools to dispel them.

Let's switch here to a second brilliant book, Searching for and Maintaining Peace, by Father Jacques Philippe.

"One of the dominant aspects of spiritual combat is the struggle on the plane of thoughts," he writes. "To struggle often means opposition between those thoughts that originate in our own spirits, or the mentality of our surroundings or even sometimes from the enemy himself and which cause us disquietude, fear, discouragement and, on the other hand, those thoughts that could comfort and re-establish our peace.

"In view of this combat, happy is the man who has filled his quiver (Psalm 127) with arrows of good thoughts, that is to say, with solid convictions, based on faith, that nourish one's intelligence and fortify one's heart in times of trial. None of the thoughts that render us anxious and agitated in spirit in any way comes from God, Who is the Prince of Peace. These are temptations of the enemy and consequently one must reject them and not take them into account."

And so -- in this period, as purification begins -- let us remember that truth comes in proportion to our humility. Only in humbleness can we discern. Otherwise, there's the devil, who is known in some cultures as the Trickster because he tricks us into thinking his thoughts and wants are our own. In battling him we must give constant notice to what we say and think. He turns positive into negative, holiness into haughtiness, love into lust. We have to keep switching it back. When a spirit of despair enters it should be shooed away with the flame of the sword of the Spirit in the Name of Jesus; suddenly the air clears and we can see the mirage of desperation.

When the devil gets us negative, he gets us desperate.

If we have opened the door to a demon by saying the wrong thing, says Prince, we need to cancel the wrong thing by saying the right thing. "Peter denied the Lord three times, but after the Resurrection Jesus led Peter to unsay his denial by affirming to the Lord three times that he loved Him (John 21:15-17).

Much comes from loneliness. Our priests -- too many -- were not taught to pray. They were taught philosophy. With prayer, we are never alone. And while many in the priesthood and religious life have fallen, our seminaries are showing signs of life and indications that a new generation of young men is entering, men who are devout and traditional, men who have defied the prince of this world.

[resources: They Shall Expel Demons and Searching for and Maintaining Peace]

[also: Michael Brown retreat in Omaha: prophecy, deliverance, generational healing, spiritual warfare]

[see also: Arlington priest once in charge of child protection accused]

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Spiritual Warfare Prayers, by Robert Abel, a little booklet of extremely powerful prayers that aim to release us from demonic bondage --whether our own sinfulness or evil that has come our way as the result of curses or generational problems. There are prayers against malefice, prayers to create a spiritual 'canopy' over your home, prayer to bind evil spirits, and prayers of inner healing! Very popular as a bedside companion. CLICK HERE