Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan

Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan: ‘People involved in some new age thing have opened up a door to Satan’
A Catholic bishop has said he is establishing a "delivery ministry" of people who will attempt to rid others of the devil and warned that using reiki or other new-age healing methods could open one up to the possibility of encountering malevolent spirits.

Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan said he had received "several requests" from people to help deal with evil forces and that one priest in his diocese of Waterford and Lismore is about to start training in the practice of exorcism.

He said he was told by the brother of a reiki master that the man was "working on somebody one day when he actually says he saw a vision of Satan" and was "scared out of his wits, dropped the reiki and went back to the Church".

Speaking to Eamon Keane on WLR FM's 'Déise Today' programme yesterday, the bishop said: "You're channelling energies, in inverted commas, you could well be opening yourself up to letting a spirit in which is not good and is dangerous stuff, actually."

He said he "absolutely" agreed with Pope Francis's view that child abuse is caused by Satan.

"Since day one, Pope Francis has been talking about the action of Satan. I have got several requests from people, one lady for example who is involved in counselling, I don't know if she's Catholic or what, but she's coming across things in people which she cannot deal with, and she knows that it's beyond psychological."

He said he has received "about nine requests" in the last couple of years from people in relation to "what they believe to be evil forces".

"I am just setting up a group, actually, of people who want to be part of delivery ministry, if you like.

"This is something that has to be done in secret because you don't let these people's names out, and they are going to houses where people maybe have been involved in some kind of new-age thing or some kind of séance or that kind of thing, and unfortunately, they've opened up a door to an evil force, Satan.

"Does Satan want to destroy the human person? Of course he does. Not only the Church, but anywhere and everywhere that he will get in."