Illinois bishop plans gay-marriage exorcism
Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Illinois is planning an exorcism for the state after it approved gay marriage.
November 15th, 2013
10:10 AM ET

Illinois bishop plans gay-marriage exorcism

By Daniel Burke, Belief Blog Co-editor

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(CNN) - The devil made them do it?

According to a Catholic bishop in Springfield, Illinois, Satan was behind his state's recent legalization of same-sex marriage.

So, next Wednesday, at about the same time Gov. Pat Quinn signs the gay marriage bill into law, Bishop Thomas Paprocki will hold an exorcism ceremony "in reparation for the sin of same-sex marriage."

Paprocki, who's something of an expert on exorcism, says he's just following the Pope's marching orders.

When Pope Francis, then Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, was an archbishop in Argentina, he called that country's legalization of same-sex marriage "a 'move' of the father of lies who wishes to confuse and deceive the children of God."

In a statement released on Thursday, Paprocki said: "The pope's reference to the 'father of lies' comes from the Gospel of John, where Jesus refers to the devil as 'a liar and the father of lies.' So Pope Francis is saying that same-sex 'marriage' comes from the devil and should be condemned as such."

Since his election as Pope in March, Francis seems to have taken a less combative approach to homosexuality. At a news conference in July, for example, he said "Who am I to judge?" a gay person who seeks to be a good person.

Illinois politicians - including Catholics - cited the Pope's words when explaining their support for the state's same-sex marriage bill.

In September, the Pope said the church has no right to "interfere spiritually" in the lives of gays and lesbians and chided Catholics who "obsess" about fighting culture war issues like abortion and same-sex marriage.

MORE ON CNN: Pope Francis: Church can't 'interfere' with gays

But Paprocki calls same-sex marriage "contrary to the plan of God" and says all Catholics who support it - from legislators to county clerks who issue marriage licenses - are "culpable of serious sin."

The bishop has invited priests and lay Catholics to his exorcism ceremony, officially called "“Prayers of Supplication and Exorcism in Reparation for the Sin of Same-Sex Marriage,” which is scheduled for November 20 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield, Illinois.

Paprocki says the ceremony will follow the Catholic Church's Rite of Exorcism, which explains that Satan not only possesses people, he can also invade places and things, including the church itself.

"We must pray for deliverance from this evil which has penetrated our state and our church," Paprocki said.

Exorcism is experiencing something of a renaissance in the United States, with the Catholic bishops recruiting dozens of priests to perform the ancient rite. Paprocki is among the bishops leading the recruiting drive.

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Culture wars • Faith • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Pope Francis

soundoff (3,013 Responses)
  1. EdwardDallas

    Religion is poison to the human race!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 15, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Edwin

      Humanity is poison to the human race. Our greed, selfishness, and cruelty to others is only topped by our self-absorption and ability to delude ourselves in the face of crisis.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
      • More cowbell

        And religion feeds on that like a leach.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
  2. We have to pool our resources to rid ourselves of Satan! Give Benny a call, Bishop Paprocki!!


    November 15, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      Adult Sesame Street unlike childrens Sesame Street, the adult version (benny) doesn't educate and instead brainwashes.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
  3. Bishop Paprocki

    Isn't it rich?
    Isn't it qu eer,
    Losing my timing this late
    In my career?
    And where are the clowns?
    There ought to be clowns.
    Well, maybe next year.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  4. RA

    Finally, a Catholic with the nads to speak the truth.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
    • Pete

      No, he is prejudice big.ot that is uneducated on the facts about gays and lesbians.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
      • Mr. E

        It sounds actually like you are the bigot. My Catholic Bishop isn't calling people names, he is just doing something for gays that he thinks might change their ways.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
        • Joey

          However, it is the simple fact that the feels they need to change their ways that is bigoted.

          November 15, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
    • If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

      I suppose it's better he uses his nads for this futile embarassment .. rather than using them for purposes of harming young boys as sooo many of his comrades have been doing.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      What truth?

      November 15, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • ME II

      Makes me wonder if the only accurate indicator of demon possession is claiming that demon possession is real.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • Doris

      The "truth". How lame. How general. And evidently something that you cannot demonstrate in any way without resorting to subjective mean/human consensus. At least no one has done so yet.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
      • Doris

        subjective means/human consensus

        November 15, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
  5. Tannim

    I think Paprocki needs to be exorcised himself. It's about love and commitment, not personal plumbing.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  6. bostontola

    My favorite part of watching Catholics and Protestants argue about which is nuttier, is that i agree with with the arguments from both sides.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
    • Edwin

      What is that old joke - an atheist is someone who agrees with you on religion when you point out that every other religion is false; they just also agree with everyone else on that same point.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
      • bostontola

        well said.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
  7. Edwin

    What a HYPOCRITE!

    He quotes the Pope, as if the Pope is an actual authority on these sorts of things. Fair enough - the Pope IS supposed to know how Catholicism feels about issues. But AS THE POPE, he has said essentially that he was wrong before. This Bishop is IGNORING THE POPE. He is picking a quote from the past and using it to spread lies about the man.

    Forget exorcisms - how about excommunication... for the Bishop?

    November 15, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  8. Landru

    Come, you will be absorbed.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
  9. Jerry

    Ah the lunatic relgious right at work.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
  10. Pete

    What is hilarious is when his plan doesn't work, it only continue to prove prayer and their religion is a waste of time.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      No, they'll invoke the devil if it doesn't work...they'll say something silly about how the nation is fallen.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
  11. Conrad Shull

    This is the kind of thing that has Pope Francis saying to American Bishops, "Knock it off!"

    November 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
  12. Ravi

    Are you going to do the ceremony in that red dress? Looks kinda gay!

    November 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • Edwin

      Seriously - no gay man would be caught dead in that sort of outfit.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
      • My Dog is a jealous Dog

        Divine in a bishop's outfit

        – the image just popped into my head, and I had to share it.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • Ghoser The Gosarian

      Ha! Awesome!

      November 15, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  13. hmmmm

    Yes! banish those gay demons! wait a minute.......but who's gonna banish the gay demon from the gay demon?

    November 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • fookinGod

      the gay angel and then whoever is the next gay and so on and on and on.....forever

      November 15, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
  14. Logic

    What is scary here is people actually believe this stuff.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
  15. If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

    To exorcise the "sin" of gay marriage .. at a church named after the act of impregnating another man's wife (the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception) .. oh, gotta love the irony!

    November 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
  16. snowboarder

    this irrational fear of hom ose xuality has to end.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

      It won't.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
    • If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

      Somewhere someone has a "rational" fear of it? JK 😉

      November 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        I heard that it's an airborne virus.
        That's why I always wear a bio-hazard suit whenever I see a musical.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          Men in tights don't do it for you? 😉

          November 15, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
  17. Bast

    Superbeing overlords are for the week minded.
    And being gay goes against the "laws" of nature, it's obvious, but I won't try to stop you.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
  18. sftommy

    Words of Jesus are more relevant than any Pagan Bishop:

    Simon the Patriot said to him, "Lord, we are surrounded by wrongness every moment of our lives. Why do you say that we need not dwell in wrongness?" Jesus said, "You hear my words, Simon, but you do not perceive their meaning. As a person thinks in his heart, so is he and so is the world in which he dwells. Every person creates his own world, according to that which he fears and that which he loves."

    November 15, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • Walter Sobchak

      Yeah, but he's a pervert Dude.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • TimTripod

      Uh... Jesus never said that.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
      • Edwin

        How is it you know every conversation Jesus ever had, word for word? Do you mean the BIBLE does not contain that quote? If so, I might believe you - though I might not. But if you claim you know because you just know, then I think you are full of something - and it isn't devotion.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
  19. SV

    I hope they serve pea soup.

    November 15, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  20. ThinkFree

    A thought....Is this bishop akin to Ted Cruz? A no-name bishop among the rank and file, tapped by the papal committee to step forward and take a hard (yet laughable) line of Mass Exorcism so as to not alienate the radical RCC's? Too bad that, like affordable healthcare, gay marriage will be commonplace in the near future. And another thought...what happens to those prayers for gay marriage? God's answer: " What? What kind of marriage?? Sorry, I can't hear you. I'm going into a tunnel....". 😉

    November 15, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
    • Conrad Shull

      I'm no fan of his, but Ted Cruz is hardly "no-name". I suggest you look into his educational and work history. Much more impressive than you might think.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
      • snowboarder

        never heard of the guy until this fall.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
      • ThinkFree

        I agree that he is more than a no-name. Especially in Texas. Was thinking of someone who was a parallel to this IL bishop. Cruz came to mind. Remember saying "Who is this guy?". My apologies if I disparaged inappropriately!

        November 15, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

      The Catholic Church supports stuff like Obamacare. I imagine their only objection would be to the compulsory provision of contraception.

      November 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
      • Edwin

        The Catholic Church is big on caring for the poor and less fortunate. That is one of the big reasons Protestants broke with the Catholic Church - too much helping those who are in need, not enough personal greed.

        November 15, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
        • Vic

          Not true!

          The following is mainly why:

          1. We are saved by the Grace of God through Faith alone in Jesus Christ as Lord and personal Savior AND apart from the Law (Mosaic.)

          2. Jesus Christ is the ONLY Mediator to God the Father, and a Christian has a direct relationship with Him, hence no Pope.

          Those are the basic tenets of the Reformation by Martin Luther, hence Protestantism.

          November 15, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
        • G to the T

          Vic – this is your (and Luther's) opinion. Until you can get the rest of the christian world to agree on a single theology, that's all it will ever be.

          November 26, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.