Prominent Anglican priest and former police chaplain Barry May is forging a reputation as an exorcist by performing the ritual about once a fortnight around Perth.
Father Barry said an increasing number of people were seeking his help, partly because of a growing awareness about his service and partly because "the occult is awakening".
Anglican Archbishop Roger Herft supported the priest's work yesterday, with the Archbishop claiming he too had performed exorcisms on people and homes in a bid to cast out demons.
Archbishop Herft said he was uncomfortable with the term "exorcism" because of its Hollywood connotations but confirmed the Church endorsed the ritual involving prayer and holy water to rid the home or body of dark powers and evil spirits.
Archbishop Herft said the Church worked with psychologists or counsellors but Father Barry admitted he used his own judgment on whether a person needed spiritual or psychological guidance.
Father Barry defended a decision to perform an exorcism last week on a man who had not sought psychological help over his belief that he had been possessed by demons. "He did not seem to have any psychological problems. He needed spiritual help," the father of four said.
Father Barry, who was the WA Police chaplain for 15 years until 2007, said most of his exorcisms were on houses. Only four or five had been on people.
Vicar-General of Perth's Catholic Archdiocese, Brian O'Loughlin, said some of its priests also did exorcisms. He said they were seen as an important and legitimate part of the Church after psychological avenues had been exhausted.Today Tonight will feature a report on exorcisms on Channel Seven tonight.
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