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Sunday, February 05, 2006

The face of a demon?

I'm going to be very candid here. Demonic attacks are REAL, and they happen all the time...including at Mass.

THe last few nights I was not sleeping well as I was having bad, or at least strange dreams, but what was worse was that I would wake up terrified for no apparent reason. My dogs were both sleeping peacefully, so I KNEW there was nothing so dangerous as, say, a fire or someone in the house who didn't belong there.

Last night was different in that I slept well and did not wake up with that odd terror. But I did have a very bad dream. I just happen to be arachnophobic...a phobia which goes back to childhood. It's pretty common, as you well know.

In my dream last night, I was in a crowd somewhere, seated, and suddenly I brought my hand up and screamed as I saw the huge spider attached to me. The thing was black, had a bright red stripe running down each leg, and the bottom portion of the spider's leg was red. I think it had red eyes, too, but I only saw two of them that I can remember.

This spider was larger than my hand, but it clung to my fingers. I couldn't shake it off, I couldn't do anything. And although I screamed and begged for help, the people around me simply acknowledged that the spider was there and failed to do a thing to assist me.

I didn't wake up terrified, which is odd, given the content of the dream, but something worse happened; when I sat at Mass this morning, the image came to me and I could almost FEEL the spider still clinging to my left hand. The panic that washed over me was so strong that I shuddered in revulsion and actually shrunk down where I sat. Tears of panic came to my eyes and I had to focus hard to escape the feeling. Intellectually I KNEW that there was not a spider clinging to my hand, but the images from the dream were very real.

Focusing on the words of the readings was helpful, but it didn't end there.

The homily was about the sacrament of the sick, and while Father spoke about it, suddenly I was overcome by the "knowledge" that I am not long for this world. In short, I am going to die. It was an odd certitude that I could not deny, a type of premonition similar to other premonitions I have had regarding some things. And still I tried to focus on what Father was saying, but the feeling grew stronger, and that sensation of panic returned again. I prayed that I would have the benefit of Confession and the Sacrament of Annointing before I go to my judgment, and I remembered the scapular I am wearing. I prayed to Our Lady for assistance if I really am to die.

Now, keep in mind: I am perfectly healthy. I do not have a terminal illness (as far as I know), and I also know that disasters happen every day. So the thought that I might die isn't so bad. It can goad one into living a better life.

But of course, this was the inappropriate time to think about such things and I needed to focus on the Mass.

But different passages came to me, such as, "Fool! What you don't realize is that this very night your life will be required of you!"

And as I struggled with this, I prayed to the Lord and to my Guardian Angel for assistance, and finally, the words I needed came to me, "I have not given you a spirit of fear...."

I realized that what gripped me was fear. Demon, thy name is Fear, Lord, deliver me from the demon called Fear.

I don't think I actually prayed those words, but I realized that I've been under attack since sometime last night by this insidious beast. The spider clinging to my hand was the face of Fear, and now that I recognize him, with God's hand I can crush him. He cannot torment me when I face him squarely with the Truth that Jesus is Lord and Savior.

And as I knelt during the consecration, the last of the feeling of panic left me, although I sensed that it was still there...just hiding. I prayed for deliverance from this beast, and as I walked up to recieve our Lord, I continually prayed for deliverance. When I returned to my seat and knelt, I could not stop crying..the tears just began to fall. I wasn't sobbing, my eyes were just tearing and for awhile, it felt like a waterfall.

That happens from time to time, but the subject of tears is for another post.

I have experienced attacks of this type before. Last fall at the Eucharistic Congress, during the Mass I felt an amazing oppression which was just crushing. I wanted nothing more than to run from the convention center and into open air. And the closer we got to the consecration, the heavier this weight became. I nearly had to hold onto my chair to keep myself from fleeing. I'm thinking my Guardian Angel may have called in reserves to sit on me, also.

Then as soon as I had recieved Communion, the weight lifted..and as I knelt, the weight lifted more and was gone. The panic was gone, the feeling that I needed to flee the room was GONE.

I KNOW I am not the only one out there to experience these things. I especially know that I am no saint, and this tells me that those who ARE very close to God, or even a few steps closer than I must be suffering this battle constantly.

So! Since I now have about 5 or 6 regular readers...tell me your stories! Maybe post your own on your blog (and then tell me how to link them here).

God Bless and be strong. Let us end with a prayer:

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray
And do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host
By the power of God
Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the earth
seeking the ruin of souls.

AMEN!

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I suggest talking to Fr. Echert from St. Augustine's church in south Saint Paul. He Im sure will be able to help you. Also go to confession and go to Mass daily if you can. This is the strongest defence against the Devil.

Sincerely,
A friend from the Cathedral of St. Paul

Ray from MN said...

Gulp

You are now in my prayers.

I've always figured that I was so weak and prone to falling and backsliding, that no demon needed to waste time working on me. I was my own worst enemy.

I've always been fascinated by how much of Our Lord's time in the Gospels was spent driving out demons, at a time when humanity was not eligible for heaven (except for a very few). Obviously the demons, aware that Messiah would someday come to free the people had set up measures anyway to prevent that occurance.

They must be doing the same thing today to prevent the return of the Lord at the end of time.

Many thousands of individuals actually invite the devil into their lives to achieve their personal aims and the tasks of exorcists have multiplied many times to deal with demons who have attacked and possessed the innocent.

Satan and his demonic hosts are taking no chances.

I do say St Michael's prayer daily, and I had better begin saying it with more fervor.

My story is boring, but I'll put something together.

Adoro Te Devote said...

Anonymous/Friend from the Cathedral...can you tell me about Fr. Echert? Why him specifically?

I think my e-mail is posted, but in case I'm wrong, you can e-mail me at: malaidea@netzero.net

That's if you'd prefer not to respond here.

Ray--I'm sure your story is not "boring", and even if you really think it is, tell it anyway! What you have to say may help someone.

I have to say, though, that your response kind of freaks me out...do you mean to say you HAVEN'T experienced what I have? I have to wonder if maybe you have but is it possible you thought it was your imagination?

I have spoken to others and read of other accounts, far worse than my own, and I must be quite the dimwit because when I start to experience these things, I ALWAYS first ask myself, "What's wrong with me? Am I just being hormonal?" What I need to be doing is praying. As you so rightly pointed out.

Keep praying, y'all!

Adoro Te Devote said...

I forgot to say, Ray, that if you have some impression that this happened to me because I'm saintly or something...well, you're wrong. Believe you me, I am no stranger to sin and I have find my way to the confessional very often.

Back when I was into the occult and in college just after I stopped going to Mass, I used to suffer terrible attacks at night. I was in a state of mortal sin and still I suffered this torment.

Don't be complacent...pray, and pay attention. I heard Fr. Corapi explain that Satan uses a "projector" of sorts to show us images. In his topic that day, the issue was pornographic images, and the subject? An elderly woman who was socked and amazed and very embarassed by what she "saw".

Pray and keep praying. The evil one is subtle and he hits us where we don't expect it. In my case last night, he chose one of my biggest fears..the most obvious target, but he waited until I was at Mass to launch his true attack.

I'm thinking it might be wise for us all to take a class in military strategy?

Our Word said...

I'd second Anon's suggestion of Fr. Echert. We've taken some Bible classes from him, and he's just a brilliant man, who also has a great grasp of theology. I think he might be able to explain how demons can work. Of course, Fr. Altier at St. Agnes is outstanding also, but as I mentioned once before he can be hard to get ahold of.

I don't know if I have anything to compare with what you shared. I have my share of sins to which I seem to keep returning, and I'll get in one of those confession-every-week ruts (not that weekly confession isn't a good thing, but regular mortal sinning certainly isn't!). It's during those times that I feel a sense of despair that I'm letting Him down, that I'm failing in my Christian life. I know that despair is the Devil's handiwork, and I know that Jesus' forgiveness is enough to overcome everything, but still there's that crushing oppressiveness that sin causes. I guess if nothing, I'm persistent - I may keep falling, but I keep getting up as well!

The one thing that relates to your feeling was an experience I had once, when I became absolutely certain that I'd gotten the message I was going to Hell unless I straightened up and became more candid with God. I can't even remember the full details of it now, but at the time it was almost enough to bring me to tears. I wanted to go to the nearest confessional and spill my guts out completely. I didn't do that, but I did try harder to become more honest with myself, knowing that it was the best way to be honest with God. I haven't had that feeling again, or at least not that prominently, but I think it has left its mark on me (in a good way).

In the best of times I have a confidence in my relationship with God, that I know what I must do to let that relationship grow. In the worst of times, I know that I can at least talk a good game, even if I don't follow my own advice. And I can tell that this week is going to be one of those where I'm going to have to work harder at it!

Anonymous said...

The reason why I suggested Fr. Echert is he will be able to get you into contact with the Archdiocese Exorcist. And if Im not mistaken I believe I read a post by him on the EWTN web site that he has assisted in a exorcism. He answers many questions on the occult and exorcism for EWTN on there questions and answers forum. Do not be worried about the evil one, after all thats what he wants. Also dont wait to go speak with him as you said in your earlier post you were active in the occult. You may have opened yourself up to them unknowingly or willingly. Either way it wont hurt to talk to him about what you have been going through. A couple books and video's I suggest you read are Fr. Gabriel Amorth "Stories of an exorcist" and the video "An interview with an exorcist" by Fr. Fortea. These can both be purchased at the leaflet missal in St. Paul.

God be with you and keep us informed.

Your Friend from the Cathedral

Adoro Te Devote said...

Hello anon friend! Thank you for your response.

I hope you are not misled by what I have revealed...I honestly think it's nothing more than the average spiritual attack. I have spoken with others who have had very similar experiences. Of course, that doesn't make it any less real.

I actually OWN the book by Fr. Amorth, and I have to order the second one, but I have not seen the interview. Currently the first book is on loan to a friend whose wife does not "believe in possession". She is also a cradle "Catholic", and has gone the way of so many others who do not know their faith.

I have spoken to a priest about my past experiences, but you're right..maybe I should speak to a "specialist" of sorts. I don't believe that any of the priests I have revealed my past to were exorcists by training and I have never had an "exorcism" as those described by Fr. Amorth. Just Confession, Mass (the introductory rite is an exorcism).

God bless, and thank you for your advice!

Anonymous said...

I have found that demonic attack occurs very often when one is coming close to spiritual breakthroughs. You are now a threat to certain demons who used to have control and now are in peril. Stick to God more than ever. Get some books on spiritual warfare if you are still afraid.

GOD BLESS

Adoro Te Devote said...

Hi, anoyn.

You bring up a good point and I need to make a distinction. While going through all this, I was not really afraid. The feelings of terror and panic weren't my true feelings. The moment I realized what was going on, I realized it was just a "glam" and with prayer, it was destroyed. I read a recent story written by a priest who experienced extreme nausea after doing an exorcism, but he was not really sick...it was demonic influence. My feelings of terror are actually just evil influence and do not indicate how I really feel about these things.


Consider it this way: if I was actually "afraid" of these creatures, I would not be posting this blog. I'm sure that much of what I say ticks off the evil one and his evilings, and to that I say "bite me!".

They can't do anything that God does not allow.

I do wish they would leave my dog alone, though. I'm tired of paying her vet bills. That's another story, however.