The Exorcism Case: Is Hollywood Spot On? The Truth Behind Exorcisms, Demonic Possession And A 400 Year Old Rite

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Exorcism, The Truth Behind The Fiction

Hollywood has gone to some pretty crazy lengths in the past to create the image of horror. Forth coming information has recently deemed that at least several of these attempts have been accurately least in the case of exorcisms.

Since the 1973 hit "The Exorcist" unleashed a foul mouthed, head-spinning, demon possessed girl on the imagination of American society , a host of films featuring demonic possession and exorcism have hit the silver screen. The next genre of horror films had been created. But unlike most horror movies, exorcist films possess a hair-raising dose of realism. The Catholic Churches theological underpinning in these movies gives them a sense of legitimacy and creates a prolific and eerily real story line.

So how closely related are these docudramas and movies to the real exorcism cases that are reported throughout the world? Incredibly close and almost too accurate for comfort. Accurate enough that two months before Pope John Paul died, he issued a mandate through Cardinal Ratzinger to train exorcists in every diocese. Father Gary Thomas (The Priest Detailed in the book The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist in which the Movie "The Rite" is based on) said “He saw occultism spreading and believed there would be a growing need for exorcists.”

Demonic Possession, Trials & Tribulations Of The Possessed

Demonic possession is the term used to describe the control over a human form by either numerous demons or the devil himself. Often times demonic possession is said to include erased memories or personalities, convulsions or "fits" such as fainting as if one were dying and /or inhuman super strength. Other conditions have been associated with demonic possession as well including unnatural body distortion (in which human limbs unnaturally stretch, bend or break), "tongues" or speaking in foreign and most often times dead languages, vulgar language, and in some severe cases levitation or psychokinesis (the moving of objects by one's mind). Unlike channeling, in which benign spirits are invited to possess the human form of the medium, the subject or possessed person has no control over the entity and so the entity will persist until forced to leave the victim, usually through a form of exorcism.

Following are a few of these documented cases. Decide for yourself whether they truly do exhibit demonic possession or are just a case of mistaken psychological illness such as psychophrenia.



The case of Julia is a captivating case to say the least because its the only one of it's kind. The most fascinating part about this case was not the fearless attempt to document an assumed " clear cut case of demonic possession" (Steven Yulish), but more importantly was the scientific background and understanding of the researcher, a well known medical doctor, board certified psychiatrist and consistent US Delegate to the International Association Of Exorcists, Richard Gallagher. Here is Julia's story.

"Julia was raised a Roman Catholic and not only had fallen from the graces of the church but had become an avowed Satanist. She not only exhibited obvious signs of demonic possession including going into a trance and speaking with another voice but she also exhibited 'special occult powers'."

"She would go into a trance. As Dr.Gallagher accurately pointed out, mentally troubled individuals often dissociate and go into such trances, but she exhibited behavior, which was different. Out of her mouth came threats, taunts and scatological language. The booming deep voice (unlike her normal voice) said "she's ours, leave her alone" and they showed contempt for anything religious or sacred. The voice called the nuns 'whores'. When she awoke from the trance she did not remember anything of what was said."

"He assembled a team of 4 Catholic priests, a deacon and his wife, and two nuns. While phone calls were being made to arrange this group, the most bizarre thing happened. That deep demonic voice of Julia's that came forth while she is in a trance, actually materialized itself over the phone lines saying once again "leave her alone, she is ours!" Dr.Gallagher stated, "Julia's trance presence was clearly associated with paranormal events". Objects would fly off of shelves exhibiting psychokinesis. She knew things about the members of the team's personal lives that she could not have possibly known. She spoke in Latin and Spanish, which she did not know. Her trance language was crude, insolent and blasphemous. During her trance she would often levitate six inches off the table and all those present could not push her body back down (Stephen Yulish, ."

Julia, after numerous attempts to exorcise the demon from her body, continued her life despite her trances. The only normalcy she found was when she wasn't in a trance like state. Only then could she live her life peacefully.

So real or completely fictional, made up, or something that could be likened to that of a mental disorder? Seems as though this case is well documented but, like so many others, leaves questionable doubt in the back of your mind. My opinion? All things are not as they seem.

Should you like to read the full story it can be found here (and I suggest you do to get the full scope of this case):

Robbie Mannheim & The Saint Louis Exorcism

The Saint Louis Exorcism may be one of thee most famous cases ever documented in history. Most people recognize it as the demonic possession case the movie "The Exorcist" was based on, however, as creepy as the movie is, the factual details of this case are much more horrific. Below is a synopsis, taken from, from the book The Devil Came To Saint Louis by Troy Taylor, of the events that occurred.

"The ordeal continued for many weeks and through many readings of the exorcism ritual. According to the witnesses, the boy's responses became more violent and repulsive as time went on. He was said to speak in Latin, in a variety of voices, in between bouts of screams and curses. He spat in the faces of the priests who knelt and stood by his bed and his spittle and vomit struck them with uncanny accuracy and over great distances. He punched and slapped the priests and the witnesses. He constantly urinated and he belched and passed gas that was said to have an unbelievable stench. He was even said to have taunted the priests and to have confronted them with information about themselves that he could not possibly have known. His body thrashed and contorted into seemingly impossible shapes and would continue during the nighttime hours. Each morning though, he would appear to be quite normal and would profess to have no memory of the events that took place after dark. He usually spent the day reading comics or playing board games with the student assistants."

"Father O'Hara told Father Gallagher something even stranger. "One night the boy brushed off his handlers," he reportedly said, "and soared through the air at Father Bowdern standing some distance from the bed with a ritual book in his hands. Presumably Bowdern was about to be attacked but the boy got no further than the book. And when his hands hit that - I assure you, Gene, I saw this with my own eyes - he didn't tear the book, he dissolved it! The book vaporized into confetti and fell in small fine pieces to the floor!"

"The ritual continued with the prayers being recited every day, despite Robbie's rabid reaction to them. The exorcism seemed virtually useless and so the priests requested permission to instruct Robbie in the Catholic faith. They felt that his conversion would help to strengthen their fight against the entity controlling the boy. His parents consented and he was prepared for his first communion. During this time of instruction, Robbie seemed to quiet somewhat and he was moved to the psychiatric wing of the Alexian Brothers Hospital. He seemed to be enjoying his lessons in the Catholic faith but this time of peace would not last. As Robbie prepared to receive communion, the priests literally had to drag him into the church. He broke out in a rage that was worse than anything the exorcists could remember(The Devil Came To Saint Louis, Troy Taylor,"

And the story doesn't stop there. The most intriguing part of this case, instances that might add more validity to this case, might just be what occurred after the exorcisms. After Robbie was sent home the Alexian Brothers Hospital staff left the belongings and furniture from his hospital room there. The door was locked and sealed and never opened again until recently. In the past 62 years numerous odd happenings surrounding that room have been reported by old and new staff. Strange tales of weird sounds, sinister growls, and shadowy figures continue to this day.

There may never be another case such as this. I do however feel it should be noted that people who suggest this case is nothing more than fictional or story front for the imaginative writers in Hollywood are all people, many never even born prior to 1949, who were in no way involved with this case. Despite the skeptics, and there are most certainly a lot, there are many people who believe the events were more than just hocus pocus or a slight of the hand but in deed factual. Many of which have no explanation for the events that took place in 1949.

So there you have it. Should you want to read the entire story it can be found here: I suggest taking the time to read it. It's long but well worth the read. This story is incredible! I'm a little creeped out just writing about it!


So here is where I will leave you. Decide for yourself if you believe these tales of possession. The tingling of my spine and the raise of the hair on the back of my neck convinces me of my own belief. There are supernatural mysteries residing in this world. Whether you believe in them or not is no matter to them, they happen regardless. As I always say, there is some truth in ever lie. Decide for yourself!

Thanks for reading, I surely do hope you enjoyed. Wishing you and yours a very scary Halloween! Muahahahaha!

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Comments 16 comments

Stephanie Wideman profile image

Stephanie Wideman 5 years ago from Stafford, VA

This topic always gives me the heebe-jeebes. I can't watch any movie on the topic, not matter how "hollywood".

efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

I love this stuff, it absolutely fascinates me! Just started watching Paranormal Witness on SyFy and The Exorcism Files on the Discovery Channel and they are both great shows. But I agree I get a little scared every now and then! Thanks for reading :)

Dardia profile image

Dardia 5 years ago from Michigan

Very interesting hub! I'll have to come back and read more of your hubs. It seems that it could spook even an unbeliever if they were to see such events. It might even convince them.

+ Darlene

efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

Thanks for stopping by Darlene! Glad you liked it. I agree, some people just need to see with their own eyes in order to believe!

tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 5 years ago from home


Supernatural stuff is awesome-anything real and creepy is gold not the jason- freddy hollwood crap

awesome read...


The Real World 5 years ago

Hahaha geez this crap is ridiculous. Seriously? Demonic possession? What is this the 15th century or something? You people are sad.

efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

Hi Tom! Glad to see you dropped by and read my newest hub :) Glad you liked it!

efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

The Real World~ seems like an appropriate enough name for a non believer :) Not sad just interested in what exists around us outside of the little box most people put themselves in. Thanks for reading and commenting though :)

john3476 5 years ago

^you mean what doesn't exist?

efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

john3476 ~No I mean what does exist outside of the normal box of thinking, thanks for reading

tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 5 years ago from home


back in the 15th century the "real world"- probably would have chided us for believing the world was NOT would that have worked out for him??


efeyas profile image

efeyas 5 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

Hey Tom, right?! Exactly my thoughts!

tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 5 years ago from home


its all prspective,regardless of time or place


whowas 4 years ago

Thanks for such an amusing hub, it really tickled my funny bone!

To take any of this seriously one would essentially have to adopt a literal belief in the Christian mythology at the outset, so really, given the total lack of reliable evidence for that, it rather falls down at the first step for me.

That said, I love a good horror story and sometimes write them, so on that level this was great fun.


Iris 2 years ago

Fantastic ilove this coz ilove the book of exorcism i know I'm still 12 years old but I really like this

efeyas profile image

efeyas 2 years ago from Some Sunny Beach, USA Author

Thanks Iris, glad you enjoyed it!

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