The Mystery of the Haunted Vampire

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Thursday, April 28, 2005

National Catholic Reporter vs. Father Malachi Martin

The famous exorcist may be dead, but that doesn't stop the National Catholic Reporter from kicking him while he's down.

Back in the 1970s, when possession and exorcism were the cinematic and fictional flavor of the era -- one that historian Martin Marty appropriately called “the silly season” -- it fell to my lot to conduct a pre-publication review of Malachi Martin’s sensational book Hostage to the Devil. I was allied in this with an internationally celebrated clinical psychologist. Working independently, our conclusion was the same: Martin’s five “cases” were fabrications of an inventive but disturbed mind, lacking all psychological, historical, theological and pastoral credibility. Some time later, I interviewed Malachi Martin on television. A former priest, Martin had left the Jesuit order under cloudy conditions, to say the least. (The sordid details were described in Robert Blair Kaiser’s agonized 2002 memoir, Clerical Error: A True Story.) In person, I found Martin to be a clever, charming, engaging Irish rogue who evaded every effort to document the instances of possession he so graphically described. In the end, my earlier suspicion that Martin was a deeply disturbed individual was strongly reinforced.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it all a hoax? Possibly. However...

I find it interesting, that the Archdiocese of New York in their annual detailed report to the Vatican lists 2 or 3 exorcists (along with a few Vestal Virgins).

Also, that the Greek Orthodox Church has a rite of Exorcism, that takes their priests a few days to prepare for, and, I could be wrong here, needs their bishop's approval to perform.


4/30/2005 07:13:00 AM  
Blogger Carnacki said...

42, I agree with you. Honestly, the National Catholic Reporter attack on Father Malachi seemed so vicious it makes me suspicious as to what is being covered up.

5/01/2005 07:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Several of Martin's allegorical "novels" were very critical of the Vatican and creeping Evil within the Church. Ratzinger was a character in at least one.

Was a Black Mass said at the Vatican and that there is a core of Satanists working behind the scenes? The vicious attacks lend credence that perhaps there is more truth than fiction in Martin's writings.


5/02/2005 09:44:00 AM  

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