Did the Pope perform an exorcism?

Benjamin Being Catholic

The press this morning was announcing that the Pope performed an exorcism. Here is the video footage that was shown on Italian television of something that happened after Mass on Pentecost Sunday. The Pope prayed over a number of people who were sick, including this young man:

This is certainly not an exorcism in the true sense, which would require that the Pope say some of the official prayers of exorcism. At the very least, you cannot call something an exorcism unless there was the command against the demon, as St. Paul did in Acts 16:18. It does not seem that the Pope said anything, only that he prayed.

I agree with the Vatican press which denied that this was an exorcism.

The Italian language commentary actually says that this was a prayer of liberation, and it then smudges the difference between a prayer of liberation and an exorcism. The Italian said, “È stata una preghiera di liberazione, o un vero e proprio esorcismo” – in other words, “This was a prayer of liberation, or an actual, real exorcism.” The problem with that statement is that a prayer of liberation is not an actual, real exorcism, but something less powerful. I have no complaint with the claim that the Pope prayer a prayer of liberation for the man.

It is possible that the young man was (is) possessed. The reaction coming out of the man is radically different from anything you would expect an ordinary person to do, but it is within the range of something a demon might do if he were feeling threatened:

If a young man had this reaction when being prayed over, I would certainly refer him to an exorcist for a full evaluation. If you do think the boy looks troubled by something, please pray for him, because even under the care of an exorcist it would be a long journey before he is free.