Fr. Gabriele Amorth makes a sensational claim

Fr. Gabriele Amorth makes a sensational claim May 23, 2012

A teenage girl whose disappearance in Rome has remained a mystery for 30 years was kidnapped for sex parties by a gang involving Vatican police and foreign diplomats, the Roman Catholic Church’s leading exorcist has claimed.

This is red meat for the media, of course. And given what has come out over the past ten years it cannot, alas, be automatically ruled out as impossible.

Nonetheless, it should also be noted that Fr. Amorth is one of the most unstable and unreliable personalities it has ever been the misfortune of the Church to see elevated to the status of Folk Hero. Jimmy Akin has documented some of Fr. Amorth’s impossible to believe declarations. In addition, he has made reckless pronouncements about everything from Harry Potter to Medjugorje, thereby endearing himself to people in need of another Conservative Folk Hero.

With this latest reckless claim, Fr. Amorth simultaneously manages to titillate the God-hating, anti-Catholic English press *and* Traditionalist-minded Catholics who eagerly want to believe the worst about the post-conciliar Church.

The problem: where’s the beef? What’s the evidence? How does he know? Why should we believe him, given his track record of demonstrably and documentably false pronouncements? Indeed, what evidence do we have for most of what Fr. Amorth says about anything? The elevation of this man to Reliable Inside Source is one of the more mysterious phenomena in Conservative Catholic circles. Without evidence or proof of any kind, all we have is one more sensational claim by a man with a long history of baseless sensational claims. Get back to me when there is some There there. If his claim is vindicated by evidence, I’ll take him seriously. If, however, he provides no evidence for his claim or, worse still, evidence is found to disprove his claim, I think the sensible thing is to stop paying attention to him or taking him as a serious source of information or guidance. And I think his history up till now is such that we should take this claim with a huge grain of salt.

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