By Louise Roseingrave
The body was thrashing; it took six men to control its charged strength. The crowd was praying feverishly in Italian, ‘Santa Maria, prega per noi.’ Those words now etched in my memory. I had gone with an open mind to Medjugorje, Bosnia Herzegovina, where Our Lady has been appearing to six visionaries for the past 32 years. But I wasn’t expecting to meet the devil. I was wandering by St James’ Church, where millions of pilgrims attend beautiful masses and prayer services, when I stumbled upon an exorcism. I pushed my head in through the crowd. It was a horror show I will never forget. The priest was bent over an Italian woman, aged in her 30s, whose face was contorted in rage. Her lips were pulled back as she bared her teeth, hissing, straining, snarling and writhing. The priest had the bible in one hand, reciting scripture.
With his other hand, the priest repeatedly made the sign of the cross on the woman’s forehead. Another, younger priest was administering holy water for the woman to drink. Her pupils were so dilated that her eyes were pools of black. Her hands were clawing at the air, the fingers curled and poised to scratch... Continue reading at Irish Examiner © Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved