Monday, May 6, 2013

Review of Manual of Minor Exorcisms by Bishop Porteous

This is a review of the small but extremely useful and helpful Manual of Minor Exorcisms, compiled by Bishop Julian Porteous, published by the Catholic Truth Society, Publishers to the Holy See, June 2010. Bishop Porteous is the Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney.

Review by Mike Chapman

As someone who is a practicing and active Roman Catholic, and is involved in leading a team that regularly is called in to homes to help individuals and families deal with demonic influence - either real or perceived - this Manual of Minor Exorcisms has been sorely needed. Thank you, Bishop Julian Porteous, for compiling these prayers. I am not a part of the Charismatic Renewal; I simply have been called by God into a ministry of helping people with these problems. This is likely due to my life experiences and education.

As one reviewer said, this manual was compiled "For the use of priests" - as it says on the front cover. This is true. However, the Bishop does include an entire range of prayers toward the back of the Manual, starting with the Prayer of St. Basil on page 55, that laity can use with complete confidence that one is not violating canon or liturgical law. As someone who strictly adheres to the Code of Canon Law (c.1172), the Praenotanda (norms) of the new 1998 Rite of Exorcism, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, as well as documents and letters put out by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Congregation for Divine Worship that regulates such matters, this Manual by Bishop Porteous is very much appreciated. He covers all of these issues sufficiently in this little manual. He makes it very clear what is allowed by laity and what is not. He is also very up-to-date with what is going on with the liturgical rite of exorcism and deliverance prayer issues. That is reflected in the Manual.

I have no doubt that this Manual will become a very useful tool in the hands of the faithful who wish to pray and intercede on behalf of those suffering and in need, yet who definitely desire to stay humble and true to their rightful role that God has placed them in, and not usurp the role of others and go beyond what they authoritatively should do. So many ordinary people are embarrassed or would never go to their priest or pastor, but they do phone and contact people such as myself and my team. Laity such as ourselves (and perhaps you too) are a non-intimidating facet of the Church, and have an important role to play in presenting the gospel and reaching a world lost in darkness. However, this must be done wisely, correctly and in accordance with ecclesial law. This Manual aids us tremendously in that desire and effort. I think this is extremely important, because if we as faithful laity submit to our rightful role, our prayers are all the more efficacious because of our humility and faithfulness to follow the Magisterium of the Church. I recommend this Manual whole-heartedly.
One can purchase it for around $20 plus shipping.

Here is a link to Amazon's page for the Manual:

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