In Bizarre Twist Exorcist Said Possession Could Be The Offering Of A 'Victim Soul'
It's a fascinating concept: that out there hidden from the world and even from members of the Church are devout folks whose mission is to pray and suffer for the cause of Jesus -- for the nation, for communities, for priests, even for specific leaders.
They are called "hidden souls" (often also "victim souls") and their sufferings range from everyday little sacrifices to alleged stigmata (the wounds of Christ, visible or invisible).
The numbers may be far higher than generally reckoned. As long ago as 1934, one estimate pegged the number at 40,000.
But how anyone could actually know that and how many there are today are both questions with no real answers.
The only certainty is that they are there and in some cases their suffering has even involved diabolical possession -- or so said one exorcist who penned a booklet called Mary Crushes the Serpent.
"According to the revelations of the demons, the Blessed Virgin has selected a little army of noble souls who are prepared to suffer everything and to offer themselves freely to God as a holocaust in atonement for souls," writes this expert, whose work was propagated through the cathedral in Bamberg, Germany (but who himself remained anonymous). "She has selected them to fight the might of Lucifer's legions upon earth and will deprive him of at least part of the victims he already counts as his own.
"It is a worldwide battle between the ferocity of the demon and the victim souls' love for the Cross. The victim souls endure bodily sufferings as well as attacks directed against the sensitive powers of the soul."
In other words, they too can go through the suffering of demonic infestation -- rarely associated with holiness, and a notion that's controversial. Through those sufferings, he said, they wrest souls from the clutches of the demon -- even as they themselves are placed in his grasp as part of their own tribulation.
"The Blessed Virgin ties the infernal spirits in groups to the victim soul in regular order," says the booklet, a sequel to another called Begone Satan! "They are enclosed in the victim as if they were locked in a prison. They are forced to combat with her until one or the other is conquered. The conquered demons are then forced back into hell."
We place this for your own private discernment -- strong notions, but ones allegedly culled during decades of exorcism (from the mid-1800s into the early twentieth century).
"What the demons have confessed is likewise fully confirmed by the revelations made to the victim souls by the Blessed Virgin and our Divine Savior Himself," he asserted. "God permits the victims souls to be attacked and even to be possessed by the demons because He wants the benign plan of the Blessed Virgin to become a reality."
Such was posited in the case of a possessed girl in the recent movie, The Exorcism of Emily Rose. "The plan is clear and simple," said the book. "By means of the free and generous suffering of the victim in battling the demons the Blessed Virgin soothes the wounded loving Heart of her Divine Son."
During one exorcism, a victim soul who had been contorted and writhing under demonic duress suddenly passed into a Heavenly countenance upon departure of the demon. In other words, there are also holy manifestations -- even the odor of sanctity.
"It would be unreasonable to believe that God, after permitting the demons to crucify these victim souls, would not also on His part extend to them supernatural help," wrote the priest -- citing visions and locutions granted such souls, who show a special purity after rising from their demonic oppression.
At the same time, it underscores the danger of certain forms of mysticism and why the Church is cautious before endorsing a seer whose phenomena may be a mix (good and evil). Such souls may be in most communities -- for all anyone knows, each parish.
"Among them the following may be enumerated," said the exorcist. "Inner voices, ecstatic visions, ecstasies, and heavenly odor."
"The victim souls will bring peace back into the Church when they have completed their suffering," said the priest -- who was described as an especially pious cleric often doing penance himself. "'The crucified souls are the ones,' said a demon, 'that will wage war against us.' 'A faithful soul is more powerful than hell, but a crucified soul is more powerful than a thousand hells.'"
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