Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Diocese of Worcester and Territorial Spirits...

It is my firm belief that the Diocese of Worcester has fallen under the influence of territorial spirits. What are territorial spirits? Francis MacNutt, in his book entitled "Deliverance from Evil Spirits: A Practical Manual," quotes from C. Peter Wagner: "'Satan delegates high ranking members of the hierarchy of evil spirits to control nations, regions, cities, tribes, people groups, neighborhoods and other significant social networks of human beings throughout the world. Their major assignment is to prevent God from being glorified in their territory, which they do through directing the activity of lower ranking demons.'

The Scriptural foundation for this lies in the apostle Paul's statement about our wrestling against 'the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms' (Ephesians 6:12). We also hear Jesus talking about tying up the 'strong man' and then being free to plunder the strong man's house (Matthew 12:29). 'It would seem reasonable,' writes Peter Wagner, 'that the principle could be applied to a nation or a city or a people group [such as a Diocese, my note] as well as a house.' " )p. 255).

The Diocese has promoted a "Commission for Women" with questionable ties. For years the Worcester Diocese ran the column of Rev. Richard P. McBrien, a dissident theologian, in the pages of its Diocesan newspaper The Catholic Free Press. The Diocese has struggled with the problem of sexual abuse against minors committed by a not insignificant number of its priests. This past week, the Diocese announced that 75 of its 120 parishes are in serious economic difficulty and that it has lost a million dollars.

Just recently a Catholic gentleman from Worcester County left me a comment at Facebook. He wrote, in part, "We moved up to Winchendon back in the late 90's for cheaper
land and peace and quiet. However, that has now run it's course - and I do agree, that
this area is spiritually dead. It has been for years.

A large problem up here - especially at STVDP parish [St. Vincent de Paul in Baldwinville, Massachusetts] - is the lack of faith formation. The program is lame and weak. My feeling is this is a direct reflection on the pastor. These are the crucial years for forming the faith! These children are the next generation of Church and if they aren't learning about it, then what does that tell us?! Watered down theology is running rampant and I don't know what it's going to take to start the turn around? People are becoming so desensitized with all of the 'issues' going on around us and our pastor isn't preaching to us about any of it! My wife and I try to ensure our children know the truth and talk with them regularly - as well as listen to them. I think it's terrible you never even got a response re: your letter to the Bishop expressing interest to the priesthood. I thought Bishop McManus was doing okay for a
while. However, I've been concerned over the past couple of years. One example has to be
the woman's conference board that you mentioned in one of your blogs! I mean, what is
going on here?"
The short answer, in my opinion, is the evil influence of territorial spirits. Let us all pray for the spiritual deliverance of our troubled Diocese. Especially while at Holy Mass and while praying the Holy Rosary. For this is spiritual warfare.


LancasterCatholicguy said...

Worcester has had so many problems I am inclined to believe your theory. Things have gotten so bad that people are levaing the parishes in droves. It really is a tragedy.

Betty said...

The situation in Gardner isn't much better. Lack of faith formation is one problem. Another is the introduction of occult new age philosophies at the parish level. At St. Joseph's parish, new age magazines were being distributed. And, as you have already noted in a previous post, a pro-abortion individual was serving as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist. None of this bodes well for the area. Read the comments left by so many people about this diocese at the Telegram articles this past week dealing with the diocese's financial difficulties. So many people are disappointed with Bishop McManus and the clergy. Pray every day that Our Lady will send a multitude of Holy Angels to cleanse the diocese from the evil spirits afflicting it.

Eric Levan said...

A Holy Cross professor who promotes same sex "marriage" and who lives with another man. Small wonder so many Catholics no longer trust the Bishop. Why is this tolerated?

David Brown said...

From Wikipedia entry on Territorial Spirits..."Romans 8:38
In Romans 8:38-9 Paul presents the reader with a number of polar opposites. In the midst of this Paul contrasts angels with "principalities" (Gr. αρχαι archai ). If, as seems likely, "principalities" is a synonym for "demons" then it would seem that the situation described in Daniel 10 (demons holding sway over a region) is not an isolated incident but rather a particular example of a general reality.

Ephesians 6:12
In Ephesians 6:12 Paul refers to the spiritual beings which oppose the work of God in the world as "rulers" (Gr. αρχαι archai ), "powers" (Gr. ἐξουσίας exousias ), and, most interestingly, "world forces" (Gr. κοσμοκράτορας kosmokratoras )."

Janet said...

Paul, thank you for having the courage to say openly what so many are afraid to say. Namely, that the root of the Worcester Diocese's problems is spiritual.

Too many Church leaders view the Church more as a corporation than they do the Mystical Body of Christ. Even many Bishops see themselves as CEO's rather than spiritual leaders.

This is why they pose secular or material solutions to spiritual problems. The Diocese asks for more money in the coffers instead of more prayer, penance and reparation.

This is because they have lost their faith.

Janet from Grafton

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

The so-called "intellectuals" of our day (proclaiming themselves to be wise but becoming fools instead - see Romans 1), have no room for the supernatural. If they cannot examine something under a microscope, through a telescope or in a laboratory, they refuse to accept its reality. But Christ's Vicar warns against this attitude.

Pope Paul VI, in a general audience on November 15, 1972, stated, "What are the Church's greatest needs at the present time? Don't be surprised at our answer and don't write it off as simplistic or even superstitious: one of the Church's greatest needs is to be defended against the evil which we call the Devil...Evil is not merely an absence of something but an active force, a living, spiritual being that is perverted and that perverts others....It is a departure from the picture provided by biblical and Church teaching to refuse to acknowledge the Devil's existence...or to explain the Devil as a pseudoreality, a conceptual, fanciful, personification of the unknown causes of our misfortunes....St. Paul calls him the 'god of this world,' and warns us of the struggle we Christians must carry on in the dark, not only against one Devil, but against a frightening multiplicity of them..."

St. Cecilia's Member said...

And Planned Parenthood has been welcome at Holy Cross College for some time. Not to mention homosexual activism. The result? More and more people are withholding their donations. I say: forward your donations to Rome or a sound Catholic/pro-life cause. The faith in Worcester is in peril.

ACatholicinClinton said...

Spirits of Sin enter because of certain sins which have been committed. St. Augustine, in his Confessions, says, "The enemy held my will; and of it he made a chain and bound me. Because my will was perverse, it changed to lust, and lust yielded - to become habit, and habit not resisted became necessity. These were links hanging one on another - which is why I have called it a chain - and their hard bondage held me bound hand and foot."

Think of all the sexual abuse committed by Worcester area priests. Think of the priests who have engaged in homosexual acts. Many refuse to preach against homosexuality because they would be convicting themselves.

Spirits of lust, occultism, proud dissent, disobedience - and other spirits -have obtained a hold on our diocese. These things must be repented of. Otherwise things will not get better but worse.

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

CatholicinClinton, well said. Pope Paul VI, in the same general audience I referred to above, said, "The matter of the Devil and of the influence he can exert on individuals as well as on communities, entire societies or events, is a very important chapter of Catholic doctrine which should be studied again, although it is given little attention today."

We ignore this chapter of Catholic doctrine (and it is thoroughly Catholic) at our own peril.

Ellen Wironken said...

New Age spiritualities and practices such as Reiki, Centering Prayer, Transcendental Meditation and the Enneagram (or ideas promoted by people like Joyce Rupp, a friend and guest speaker of the Worcester Commission for Women) invite the Devil in.

As Father Gabrielle Amorth has said, "There is no distinction between white and black magic. When magic works, it is always the work of the Devil . All the forms of occultism, such as mass recourse to Eastern religious with all their esoteric connotations, are an open door for the Devil. And so he comes in. Immediately."

Why doesn't Bishop McManus address this? The answer seems obvious. He lacks the resolve to drive out the demonic.

Jonathan said...

Bishop Montrose has warned that involvement in the New Age, as with other forms of occultism, opens a door to the demonic. So does illicit sexual activity. I recommend reading his statement at EWTN regarding the New Age and other doorways to demonic obssession, infestation, and possession.

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