Students attending a US school will no longer be allowed to check out the Harry Potter book series after the school’s Reverend Dan Reehil reportedly removed them at the recommendation of “several exorcists”.
News outlet The Tennessean reports that the popular book series about a young boy wizard has been banned from St Edward school in Nashville as the pastor at the Roman Catholic parish school described the books as a “clever deception”.
He claimed that the spells written in the fictional books are real spells and curses.
In an email to the parents of the school Reverend Reehil reportedly wrote that after consulting with several US and Roman exorcists over the books, he was advised to remove them from the school library.
Rebecca Hammel, superintendent of schools for the Catholic Diocese of Nashville told USA Today that while the Catholic Church does not have an official position on the Harry Potter books, she said the school's pastor does have the final say.
In his email, Reverend Reehil states "These books present magic as both good and evil, which is not true, but in fact a clever deception.
“The curses and spells used in the books are actual curses and spells; which when read by a human being risk conjuring evil spirits into the presence of the person reading the text,” he wrote.
According to pottermore.com over 500 million copies of the Harry Potter novels have been sold around the world and the series has been published in 80 different languages.
The books have been praised for encouraging children to read more and the author, J.K. Rowling is seen as a positive role model with her ‘rags to riches’ story of becoming the first author billionaire, a title she lost after giving a significant amount of her earnings to charity.
J.K. Rowling has not responded to the ban or commented on the spells’ ability in the fictional series for muggles to ‘risk conjuring evil spirits’.
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