A determined Catholic bishop plans to rid a troubled city of ‘demons’ by pouring holy water from a helicopter.
The mass exorcism will take place in Buenaventura, on Colombia’s Pacific coast – an area notorious for drug crime and gang warfare – during the city’s annual patron saints festivities this weekend.
Bishop Monsignor Rubén Darío Jaramillo Montoya will be stationed in a military helicopter armed with holy water in hope to purge the city from ‘demonic infestation’.
Speaking to a Colombian radio station, Montoya revealed his ambitious plans:
We want to go around the whole of Buenaventura, from the air and pour holy water onto it to see if we exorcise all those demons that are destroying our port.
The bishop’s concern isn’t without cause. According to Metro, Buenaventura is considered one of the most crime-ridden cities in Colombia. Montoya says 51 murders have been recorded in the city this year so far.
We have to drive the devil out of Buenaventura, to see if we can restore the peace and tranquility that our city has lost due to so many crimes, acts of corruption and with so much evil and drug trafficking that invades our port, said Montoya to local news.
The Guardian reports Montoya, ordained by Pope Francis in 2017, unveiled his plan to exorcise Buenaventura after the horrific murder of a 10-year-old girl.
During the exorcism, the bishop will also bless those who have tragically lost their lives through violence.
Speaking to a religious news agency, CNA, Montoya said:
Where blood flowed, where blood was shed, we are now going to pour holy water as a sign of reparation at the place where those who died were struck down by violence.
Last year, it was widely reported the Vatican held an exorcism training course for priests. They claimed ‘demands for deliverance from demonic possession had greatly increased across the world’
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L’Oréal Blackett is a freelance journalist, broadcaster, and presenter with a lot of hair and a lot to say. A former digital magazine editor covering women’s issues and local news, she now works for a range of media publications including BBC Radio Manchester, Bumble and of course, UNILAD.