According to 20/20, exorcism is still practiced daily in almost all parts of the world. From research I have done, it is no longer exclusively practiced by the Catholic church, but the number of exorcists and exorcisms is growing amongst protestant churches, as well. If these reports are true, then we are headed on a rapid decline back toward another era of the dark ages.
Many in the Catholic church seriously believe in demon possession and the ritual of exorcism. (See this video by The Jesuits concerning exorcism.) However, I think a big part of why exorcism is becoming so popular,particularly with protestants, is that people are looking for drama in their dull, boring lives, and crooks and con men have found another way to bilk money from the stupid, superstitious, gullible, or those who are just plain looking for some attention. (Like "Self-styled Exorcist Bob Larson takes his dog and pony show on the road to bilk people out of money.")
Just a couple days ago, a story was reported about an Edgewater, Florida city councilwoman and her husband who are under investigation for performing an exorcism on their 18-year-old daughter after she got into a yelling match with her twin sister. Her father told police he was trying to anoint his daughter with olive oil to "cast the demons out of her.”
FULL STORY: Florida Politician Performs Exorcism On 'Possessed' Daughter
Investigators said the couple admitted they tried to exorcise the demons out of their daughter by pouring olive oil on her while they held her hands behind her back on June 27.
"I don’t think any person should have to endure what occurred that night," said Edgewater Police Detective Heather Brady.
LINK: Why is it that atheists are never "possessed"? Or pagans, or Buddhists?
Detectives said it all started when the 18-year-old got into a yelling match with her twin sister.
Her father told police he was trying to anoint his daughter with olive oil to "cast the demons out of her.”
Neighbors were surprised by the allegations. "Everybody's got their own beliefs. That's definitely not mine. It's a little far fetched I would think," said neighbor Lou Marcoccio.
Detective Brady said police believe this wasn't the first time this happened. "This is bizarre, but this apparently was a normal occurrence."
This time police found the teen's clothes torn off in the struggle and she had bruises on her arm and knees.
At first she was taken into police custody for a psychological evaluation, but she was released almost immediately.
The teen is now staying at a safe house. "Investigation has revealed she attempted to get away. She didn’t want that to occur, and she received injuries during that, " said Detective Brady.
The State Attorney's Office said this is still an active investigation and has not said whether they'll pursue charges.
Copyright 2007 by WSBTV.com.