A good sign you’re on the right path

The degree of torment the demons are permitted to exert does not decrease as you increase in sanctity. If you are sometimes shocked at the wickedness, its depth or its stealth or its cunning, that is actually a good sign, provided you deal with it the right way. If you fail, go to Confession, and then keep memory of the incident top of mind, to inform your bearing.

Temptation itself is not a sin. It is literally the way by which God works perfection in us. In resisting temptation, patiently enduring tribulation, we merit additional graces, and continue further down the road. Every defeated temptation is a victory. Start making a record of them. You will need many such.

“And now, brethren, as you are the ancients among the people of God, and their very soul resteth upon you: comfort their hearts by your speech, that they may be mindful how our fathers were tempted that they might be proved, whether they worshipped their God truly. They must remember how our father Abraham was tempted, and being proved by many tribulations, was made the friend of God. So Isaac, so Jacob, so Moses, and all that have pleased God, passed through many tribulations, remaining faithful.”

-Judith 8:21-23, (entire book removed by Luther and cannot be found in Protestant bibles to this day)

42 thoughts on “A good sign you’re on the right path

  1. Absolutely true. I started questioning my position about the Church end of last year. By mid February was pretty certain, but didn’t act on it. At that time I decided to start some early Lenten practices…..SHTF. it’s only by the grace of God that I’ve been able to hang on and keep my devotion to the Rosary. The evil one watched our every move.

  2. Yes. Any advancement we make within our family in sanctity or resisting the world, it is inevitable we get blindsided. Sometimes the pain is incredible.

    We cling to our family rosary.

  3. Regarding the books removed by Luther:

    Before I was a Catholic, and even before I was a serious Christian, I’d hear Protestants saying “66 books of the Bible…” over and over again.

    My mathematical brain was intrigued by that specific number. “Why 66?” I wondered, and that question led me to other questions, which ultimately led me to becoming self-catechised to a much higher degree than any other Catholic in the last 5 decades. I think I shocked my first pastor in RCIA when he figured out that I had actually read the entire Catechism… I literally sat down, opened it up, and started reading it. The citations at the bottom of the pages led me to the Church Fathers and other Church documents. Today I’m working my way through the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Catechism (which gives an Eastern perspective of the same “stuff.” Think of it like: “We agree with The Latin Rite on this matter, but our Eastern Saint(s) explains it this way…”) Then ultimately into the Church Easter Vigil 2011.

    1. Warning: There are prayers in this book which are forbidden to laity, and for good reason. Laity have zero authority over angels (demons) and thus zero binding power. Asking Christ to bind is fine, but any formula containing “I bind,” in the first person is to be avoided unless you are a priest. If you don’t believe me, you’ll find out the hard way.

      1. How about this: in the Name of Jesus, I bind you spirit of _______ and send you to the Foot of the Cross to be judged by our Lord?

      2. Mark….someone should tell Fr. Philip Wolfe, FSSP then….starts about the 26 min mark.

      3. Debbie, I told Father Ripperger himself. His response was, “well, I got an Imprimatur…”

        This isn’t a difficult concept. Laymen have no authority over demons. They will laugh at you, and worse, if you attempt to attack them directly. Even priests who do not have specific exorcism delegation from their bishop get hammered when try ordering demons around.

      4. Mark, Fr. Ripperger got an Imprimatur….from Bergoglio Church? Or Benedict? No matter.

        For Catholics like me from 5 years ago, “this isn’t a difficult concept” doesn’t quite cut it. I was assured that if I went to FSSP, ICK or SSPX (though not every trad agreed whether SSPX was an option) I would be “safe” from error.

        “Even priests get hammered….” just one more indication that the sedes are correct., Imo.

      5. You do know that St. Anthony of the desert was most probably a layman…and St. Teresa of Avila….and St. Catherine of Siena…and, and, and….

      6. Should I have said “average layman” ?? or rather, should we advise people to assume they are lay saints and go ahead and mess around with demons?

      7. Thanks for this information, Mark. I have actually used the formula mentioned by Kono occasionally during bouts of intense mental temptations and it seemed to help. I heard it recommended by a layman out of Texas who has some solid Catholic content on you tube, etc. I have the Deliverance Prayer book mentioned, but I checked the prayers I daily say, and the only one using the term “binding “ is the Lorica prayer, binding myself and those in my immediate family to Christ, so I’m thinking that’s ok. I do pray the Auxilium Christianorum prayers but did get the permission of my confessor first; none of those mention binding.

        I do not want to be outside any legitimate authority. Therefore, your recounting of Father Ripperger’s comment is troubling, Mark; I think I would have expected a more vigorous defense than merely that there’s an imprimatur. I have always given great credence to what Father Ripperger says because of his training and ministry as an exorcist. Now, I’m just confused but am grateful for the warning you give. I will certainly be extra careful.

        The one thing that has puzzled me as I became acquainted with the concept of deliverance ministries these last several years is I don’t recall reading about binding prayer in the lives of the saints. For example, St. Therese’s family isn’t recorded, as far as I can tell, praying binding prayers over her when she had the mental disturbances that had her bedridden as a pre-teen. Nor, as a child in Catholic grade school (right before all the changes came in) were we taught anything like binding prayers when we were taught the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and such. However, some saints obviously battled evil spirits in a more direct way— how did they? I’m remembering St. Teresa of Avila utilized holy water. Now that I think about it, I don’t remember hearing she used binding type prayers. I don’t know if it’s just not recorded or it just wasn’t done.

        Again, I am grateful for your comment, Mark—it’s food for thought.

      8. The layman from Texas has a video on YouTube encouraging praying the direct binding prayers with your children. Toddlers, literally. This is insane.

      9. “Should I have said “average layman” ?? or rather, should we advise people to assume they are lay saints and go ahead and mess around with demons?”

        Is that what I said?
        We tend to give demons waaaay more power over us than they actually have. If you are in a state of grace, they are terrified of you…hate you yes, but terrified. You carry the Holy Spirit, indeed the entire Holy Trinity within you….demons have no, and I repeat NO power over you…only what you hand over….and fear is part of the handing over.
        I thought we were called to imitate the Saints. I thought they were our models to follow. I would highly suggest reading the little book of St. Anthony’s life written by St. Athanasius, Your Baptism confers an authority, not that of Orders mind you, and please don’t accuse me of saying that…I didn’t, but absolutely an authority….not to exorcise for heave’s sake, but certainly to dismiss the demons harassing you. Read St. Teresa’s autobiography…she held the proper disdain for them and their actions. They will always harass us, but we most certainly, as Baptized, Christians in a state of grace, have the authority (I would argue responsibility) to dismiss them….never argue with them(!)…but dismiss them.

  4. Thanks much. This comforts my heart. What a good bible quote. The more I learn about Protestantism…i shake my head. (If the King James Bible was good enough for St. Paul it’s good enough for me!!!)

  5. Wow so that’s why things started getting weird when I prayed those prayers. Granted things got and get weird when I pray a full 15 decade rosary to.

    It was Ann who first first turned me onto praying a full 15 decade rosary DAILY. It was this one from 2013.

    https://www.barnhardt.biz/2013/11/16/bead-squeezer-how-to-pray-the-rosary/

    Since then I’ve prayed a full 15 decade and the exorcism prayers while in adoration throughout the years. I found that praying the exorcism prayers while in adoration helped with the blowback.
    It staved of alot of demonic interference.

    I also have blessed oil, blessed church intense, bought from Autom.com, blessed candles,  Epiphany water, blessed salt, blessed metals, blessed rosaries, blessed statues, all in the Old Rite from FSSP priests.

    These are all things I picked up after praying a 15 decade rosary on and off and from listening to talks about Catholic exorcisms on YouTube. Fr. Ripperger mainly but he’s not the only one.

    With the demonic sometimes it takes a sustained and multilayered attack to get a break through. I’ve seen strongholds literally break in real time. But that’s not what we’re trying to do here. Ultimately what we’re trying to do it is get closer to Christ, which all those things revolve around. Without Christ at the center all those things are misguided, Fr. Amorth even said so in one of his books, which convicted me because at the time I was acquiring all those blessed items. I still have them and do use them liberally, such as the oil, salt and Epiphany water. Weird things still crop up now and then but what those items do is reinforced my trust in Christ and also in the authority he has given his Church.

    For people getting blow back from the demonic I would suggest what Ann has said which is attend daily mass, pray a 15 decade rosary and as Fr. Z always says GO TO CONFESSION!

  6. susan July 11 says “……demons have no, and I repeat NO power over you…only what you hand over….”

    I believe this statement is wrong and dangerous. It is God Who allows how much power demons have over us. Think Job. This statement is a gateway to eventually not believing in Satan/demons. We KNOW angelic beings, whether good or evil, are far more intelligent than us. The ONLY exception would be Our Lady. I hope you rethink your position.

    1. Kono….I absolutely agree with you on this, and so does St Anthony….that’s why he was able to “dismiss” them without a worry. In fact he would say, if the Lord has given you power over me to kill me or rip me to shreds then do it…if not leave (paraphrase, but the jist). Yes, the demons are given power to harrass, and at time even to assault, but should we have any real fear of them whatsoever?. ..do they have any real power OVER a soul in the state of grace? No. Just like Adam and Eve….our decision.
      Are you saying that the demons can force you to sin, or despair, or that God EVER gives them that power over you?….cause that’s a position I would think is dangerous.

      1. Susan, in the icon depicted at the top of this post, is St. Anthony depicted inaccurately? It doesn’t seem he’s having an easy time of it.

      2. Holy smokes!….did I ever say the demons won’t give us a hard time??? I think I said repeatedly that they WILL harass, obsess, and bother us greatly. If you read the book I suggested (not just look at an icon) it describes in great detail St. Anthony’s battle against the demons, but the main point being, he did NOT lose his peace over them. In fact, his peace in their presence drove them even madder. Yes, they can beat us (even physically in RARE cases), harass us, even destroy much that we hold dear in this life IF they’re given power by God to do so (again, a rare acquiescence), but even that is for a lesson to us to rely on God, to trust His Sacraments, to rely on Grace and keeping ourselves in that state.
        Perhaps some of the confusion comes in what I mean by “power” over us….I’m referring to the soul and the things eternal….God never ever gives them the power over our souls. Ever.

  7. To can’t remember my screen name, Fr. Ripperger being troubling: I agree. When I first converted I listened to a lot of sermons/teachings at Sensus Fidelity and couldn’t get into Fr. Ripperger. I chalked it up to my not being knowledgeable or intelligent enough to understand him. Then when I did gain a little more knowledge and could understand more of what he said, I always had an uneasy feeling about him. I think it’s his delivery, God forgive me if I’m wrong, but he simply reeks of pride. He’s smug. Sorry if this offends anyone, but that’s what I hear when he speaks. Smugness. It’s one thing to be arrogant when speaking with other clergy…..but not with the laity.

    1. Not good.
      This man is a holy ranger….an authorized exorcist facing down the demonic every day, probaby volunteering for the ‘privelege’, and you don’t like him and feel free to dismiss what he says because you don’t like his ‘tone’….seriously?
      You accuse one of the good guys (and Fr Ripperger is that), of ‘reeking of pride’, being arrogant, and smug, because you don’t like his ‘tone’.
      Wow.
      At what point, and I include Mark in this question, does God not provide for His Church against the machinations of evil men within?….was Aquila not appt by Benedict?….is that not good enough?

      1. Susan, surely you are aware there are exorcism prayers against demons that are forbidden to the laity. Yes? If the demons are simply shooed away without a fuss, why would certain prayers be restricted to exorcists? The Church clearly sees the danger, where you say there is none.

      2. susan, the “holy ranger” Fr. Ripperger is wrong about Francis being the pope. He’s also wrong about binding prayers….otherwise he could site pre-VII sources instead of obtaining a VII “Imprimatur”. Being wrong on these two issues makes one wonder what else he may be wrong on. Seeing as we currently have no pope who is speaking up and guiding us, it’s natural we have to rely on priests for help. Sorry if I’m not jumping on your Ripperger deification bandwagon when he’s obviously in error, imo on two important issues.

      3. Kono, now you’ve culumniated 2 people….wanna go for 3? Never did I state Fr. R was a deity. I think lots of good priests are wrong on various points, especially regarding bergoglio, but does that take away their appointed and proper authority in my eyes?…no. I’m not a Catholic protestant. He’s a good priest, fighting demons daily, and I will always give him the benefit of the doubt. You’re lashing out badly….stop and breathe. I’m not ad hominem attacking, or making personal assaults; I’m responding to statements I disagree with, and doing my best (no doubt badly) to explain my reasoning.
        I’ve read the prayer you cited before and found it to be quite beautiful. Nothing is said in the person’s own authority…it is Christ’s invoked…and the prayer isn’t sending to hell, but to the feet of Christ to judge. We say a whole LOT more in the Leonine St. Michael prayer…we pray that St. Michael CAST HIM INTO HELL, but once again, by the power and authority of God. I assume by the brew-hah-hah raised, that Fr. R said the binding prayer you cited is OK for laity(?)…in which case I would say, yep.

        1) Yes indeed Mark, I think there are some prayers that should definitely not be used by the laity…for instance in the long version of the St. Michael prayer there is a paragraph that is obviously directed to and for priests…. it says something along the lines of ‘by the authority I’m given….’. Some people would argue (and I believe you had it argued against you) that lay shouldn’t say the paired down version of that prayer (not the very truncated one we say after Mass), as it is indeed a minor exorcism. You said it was perfectly ok for us to pray, and I fully agreed with you. I think it’s also a great idea to invoke your Guardian Angel immediately for help when under obvious harassment, also Our Lady, St. Joseph, and Patron Saints….I’ve done this repeatedly, and ALWAYS had the requested help forthwith.

        2) I never said that the demons were “simply shooed away without a fuss”….please actually read what I’ve said exhaustively above, and not accuse me of saying what I didn’t.

        3) “The Church clearly sees the danger, where you say there is none.”….Once again, never said it. What I would say is that it takes a whoooole lotta chutzpah to argue with an actual, good-by-all-accounts exorcist on what the ok prayers are for the laity to say, and to argue his authority cause you don’t like the bishop who appointed him (even though it was a valid pope who appointed said bishop!).

        Kono, I’ve prayed for you often, particularly as regards your children. Mark, I’ve prayed in deep thanksgiving for the gift of you and Ann to all of us; your work and voice are invaluable. I just disagree vehemently on a few points here, and am gobsmacked at some of the vitriol and detraction leveled, especially toward a good priest (I deserve it no doubt, but he is indeed a holy ranger, and I am most thankful to God for his fiat, where others wouldn’t dare lay a toe).

      4. Susan, the tone of your initial comment is what set me on edge. It came off to me as, demons are no big deal, you’re giving them more power than they really have, they just need to be “dismissed.” Downplaying demons sounds like a terrible idea to me. So if I allowed your comment, I then had a moral duty to it out. Do you know what Fr R had a moral duty to do? If I was wrong on my assertion, he had a duty to correct/explain it to me, not simply point to his imprimatur, no matter who it was.

      5. “It came off to me as….”
        hopefully I’ve explained myself a little better.
        And BTW, in speaking of a ‘moral duty’, don’t you think it would be better to simply ask for a deeper clarification than to attribute to me (multiple times) things I didn’t say, but that “came off to you as…”?

        Funny thing….I listened to the most excellent talk by Fr. Philip Wolfe FSSP embedded above, and I suppose you would argue with him too? Perhaps Fr. R couldn’t come up on the spot with Aquinas’ teaching regarding the legitimacy of laity praying certain binding prayer, or the Catholic Encyclopedia promoting it. Perhaps you would take issue with them also?

      6. Susan, I never said the laity cannot say binding prayers. I have the Deliverance Prayers booklet of the Auxilium Christianorum, and I use it. I simply objected to one specific form, with the laity binding directly in the first person, without invoking the authority of Christ. I allowed the link to the book to be published, so again, felt I had a duty to add the warning. Let’s move on.

      7. “Susan, I never said the laity cannot say binding prayers….I simply objected to one specific form, with the laity binding directly in the first person, without invoking the authority of Christ.”

        Funny that….that’s not what you said previously….
        “….Laity have zero authority over angels (demons) and thus zero binding power. Asking Christ to bind is fine, but any formula containing “I bind,” in the first person is to be avoided unless you are a priest.”

        You’ve changed your base premise….I agree with your current one.
        move on indeed.

      8. 1) Why on earth say a binding prayer if you’ve got zero authority to bind?

        2) You said without qualification “…any formula containing “I bind,” in the first person is to be avoided unless you are a priest” and only later added the VITAL caveat, “…without invoking the authority of Christ.” Adding that caveat did indeed change your initial assertion, and backs up mine.

        3) “You just don’t like the first one”….not so, but once again, thanks for attributing to me something that isn’t true. I disagreed with your first assertion, ergo I had a ‘moral responsibility’ to explain my point.
        I think we’re finally on the same page.
        Pax et Bonum.

      9. Wow….I would have thought better of you Mark. It’s your blog, you can publish or withhold whom you wish, but to not publish the last comment speaks tomes. No matter…it was really for you. Anyone with the capacity to think thru a wet paper bag already came to the same 3 conclusions. I held great respect for you, but unmasking seems to be the order of the times, and it comes from even the most unexpected quarters. Sadly, I’m no longer ever surprised. I’ve greatly enjoyed your blog, but will no longer be reading it, as I’m greatly doubting the underlying spirit. It would have been so easy and Christian to say “ahhh, I see your point” when you’ve been checkmated on a vital topic….so easy, yet so very hard.
        And BTW….”you made me hit you”, has never been a good moral argument.

        My Mass will be for you tomorrow.

  8. susan, before commenting further, could you make it perfectly clear to me that you see no harm in the laity using binding prayers? Such as the example I gave above?

  9. Mark said: “Susan, the tone of your initial comment is what set me on edge. It came off to me as, demons are no big deal, you’re giving them more power than they really have, they just need to be “dismissed.” Downplaying demons sounds like a terrible idea to me. ”

    Totally agree with you Mark. Glad I’m not just being hyper sensitive.

    susan, I’ve obviously ruffled some feathers in regards to Fr. R. Sorry, but I stand by everything I’ve said. And that goes for Fr. Wolfe too, who I’ve thoroughly enjoyed listening to over the years. I’m not going to trust my soul to priests who are attached in any way to VII Church and Bergoglio.

    As to the demons, my point is that they’re far more intelligent than man. They study and watch us, waiting to pounce. I’m wondering if having Bergoglio on the scene isn’t helping in lulling folks into a false security in regards to the danger of demons. He’s such an idiot (per Ann) that we may start believing demons are too.

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