The Rite of Exorcism: Taken from the Roman Ritual with Protestant Revisions

Originally from here.

The original author of the Roman Ritual and this Rite of Exorcism was Giulio Antonio Santorio, who had completed his work in 1586. The English translation that this version is based on was made by Philip Weller in 1964.

exorcist-ritual1. The pastor delegated by the council to perform this office should first go to confession or at least elicit an act of contrition, and, if convenient, take the Lord’s Supper, and implore God’s help in other fervent prayers. He dresses just as he would on Sunday morning. Having before him the person possessed (who should be bound if there is any danger), he traces the sign of the cross over him, over himself, and the bystanders, and then sprinkles all of them with holy water. After this he kneels and says the Lord’s Prayer, exclusive of the prayers which follow it. All present are to make the responses. At the end of the prayer he adds the following:

Antiphon: Do not keep in mind, O Lord, our offenses or those of our parents, nor take vengeance on our sins.

The Lord’s Prayer a second time (the rest inaudibly until:)

P: And lead us not into temptation.

All: But deliver us from evil.

Psalm 53

After the psalm the pastor continues:

P: Save your servant.

All: Who trusts in you, my God.

P: Let him (her) find in you, Lord, a fortified tower.

All: In the face of the enemy.

P: Let the enemy have no power over him (her).

All: And the son of iniquity be powerless to harm him (her). Lord, send him (her) aid from your holy place.

All: And watch over him (her) from Heaven.

P: Lord, hear my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you. Let us pray. God, whose nature is ever merciful and forgiving, accept our prayer that this servant of yours, bound by the fetters of sin, may be pardoned by your loving kindness. Holy Lord, almighty Father, everlasting God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who once and for all consigned that fallen and apostate tyrant to the flames of Hell, who sent your only-begotten Son into the world to crush that roaring lion; hasten to our call for help, and snatch from ruination, and from the clutches of the noonday devil, this human being made in your image and likeness. Strike terror, Lord, into the beast now laying waste your vineyard. Fill your servants with courage to fight manfully against that reprobate dragon, lest he despise those who put their trust in you, and say with Pharaoh of old: “I know not God, nor will I set Israel free.” Let your mighty hand cast him out of your servant, Name, + so he may no longer hold captive this person whom it pleased you to make in your image, and to redeem through your Son; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever.

All: Amen.

2. Then he commands the demon as follows: I command you, unclean spirit, whoever you are, along with all your minions now attacking this servant of God, by the mysteries of the incarnation, passion, resurrection, and ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ, by the descent of the Holy Spirit, by the coming of our Lord for judgment, that you tell me by some sign your name, and the day and hour of your departure. I command you, moreover, to obey me to the letter, I who am a minister of God despite my unworthiness; nor shall you be emboldened to harm in any way this creature of God, or the bystanders, or any of their possessions.

3. Next he reads over the possessed person these selections from the Gospel, or at least one of them. A reading from the Gospel of John (1:1-14). As he says these opening words he signs himself and the possessed on the brow, lips, and breast. A reading from the Gospel of Mark (16:15-18): At that time Jesus said to His disciples: “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they  will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” A reading from the Gospel of Luke (10:17-20): “Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from Heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in Heaven.” A reading from the Gospel of Luke (11:14-22): “And He was casting out a demon, and it was mute. So it was, when the demon had gone out, that the mute spoke; and the multitudes marveled. But some of them said, “He casts out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.” Others, testing Him, sought from Him a sign from heaven. But He, knowing their thoughts, said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and a house divided against a house falls. If Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? Because you say I cast out demons by Beelzebub. And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they will be your judges. But if I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you. When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace. But when a stronger than he comes upon him and overcomes him, he takes from him all his armor in which he trusted, and divides his spoils.”

P: Lord, hear my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you.

P: Let us pray. Almighty Lord, Word of God the Father, Jesus Christ, God and Lord of all creation; who gave to your holy apostles the power to trample underfoot serpents and scorpions; who along with the other mandates to work miracles was pleased to grant them the authority to say: “Depart, you devils!” and by whose might Satan was made to fall from heaven like lightning; I humbly call on your holy name in fear and trembling, asking that you grant me, your unworthy servant, pardon for all my sins, steadfast faith, and the power–supported by your mighty arm–to confront with confidence and resolution this cruel demon. I ask this through you, Jesus Christ, our Lord and God, who are coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

4. Next he makes the sign of the cross over himself and the one possessed, holds a crucifix in front of the latter’s eyes, and, putting his right hand on the latter’s head, he says the following in tones filled with confidence and faith:

P: See the cross of the Lord; begone, you hostile powers!

All: The stem of David, the lion of Judah’s tribe has conquered.

P: Lord, hear my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you. Let us pray. God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, I appeal to your holy name, humbly begging your kindness, that you graciously grant me help against this and every unclean spirit now tormenting this creature of yours; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.


I cast you out, unclean spirit, along with every satanic power of the enemy, every specter from Hell, and all your fallen companions; in the name of our Lord Jesus + Christ… Begone and stay far from this creature of God! + For it is He who commands you, He who flung you headlong from the heights of Heaven into the depths of Hell. It is He who commands you, He who once stilled the sea and the wind and the storm. Hearken, therefore, and tremble in fear, you demon, you enemy of the faith, you foe of the human race, you begetter of death, you robber of life, you corrupter of justice, you root of all evil and vice, seducer of men, betrayer of the nations, instigator of jealousy, fountain of greed, inciter of discord, author of pain and sorrow. Why, then, do you stand and resist, knowing as you must that Christ the Lord brings your plans to nothing? Fear Him, who in Isaac was offered in sacrifice, in Joseph sold into bondage, slain as the paschal lamb, crucified as man, yet triumphed over the powers of Hell. (The three signs of the cross which follow are traced on the brow of the possessed person)…Begone, then, in the name of the Father, + and of the Son, + and of the Holy + Spirit. Give place to the Holy Spirit by this sign of the holy + cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with the Father and the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever.

All: Amen.

P: Lord, hear my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you.

P: Let us pray. God, creator and defender of the human race, who made man in your own image, look down in pity on this your servant, Name, now in the toils of the unclean spirit, now caught up in the fearsome threats of man’s ancient enemy, sworn foe of our race, who befuddles and stupefies the human mind, throws it into terror, overwhelms it with fear and panic. Repel, O Lord, the devil’s power, break asunder his snares and traps, put the unholy tempter to flight. By the sign + (on the brow) of your name, let your servant be protected in mind and body. (The three crosses which follow are traced on the breast of the possessed person). Keep watch over the inmost recesses of his (her) + heart; rule over his (her) + emotions; strengthen his (her) + will. Let the temptations of this mighty enemy vanish from his (her) soul. Graciously grant, O Lord, as we call on your holy name, that the evil spirit, who hitherto terrorized over us, may himself retreat in terror and defeat, so that this servant of yours may sincerely and steadfastly render you the service which is your due; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.


I command you, ancient serpent, by the judge of the living and the dead, by your Creator, by the Creator of the whole universe, by Him who has the power to consign you to Hell, to leave immediately in fear, along with your savage subordinate demons, from this servant of God, Name, who seeks refuge in Jesus and the true church. I command you again, + (on the brow) not by my weakness but by the might of the Holy Spirit, to depart from this servant of God, Name, whom almighty God has made in His image. Yield, therefore, yield not to my own person but to the minister of Christ. For it is the power of Christ that forces you, who brought you low by His cross. Tremble before that mighty arm that broke asunder the dark prison walls and led forth souls to light. May the trembling that afflicts this human frame, + (on the breast) the fear that afflicts this image (on the brow) of God, descend on you. Make no resistance nor delay in leaving this man (woman), for it has pleased Christ to dwell in man. Do not think of despising my command because you know me to be a great sinner. It is God + Himself who commands you; the majestic Christ + who commands you. God the Father + commands you; God the Son + commands you; God the Holy + Spirit commands you. The mystery of the cross commands + you. The faith of the holy apostles Peter and Paul and of all the saints commands + you. The blood of the martyrs commands + you. The devout prayers of all holy men and women command + you. The saving mysteries of our Christian faith command + you. DEPART, then, transgressor! COME OUT, you seducer, full of lies and cunning, foe of virtue, persecutor of the innocent! Give place, abominable creature, give way, you monster, give way to Christ! For He has already stripped you of your powers and laid waste your kingdom, bound you prisoner and plundered your weapons. He has cast you forth into the outer darkness, where everlasting ruin awaits you and your allies. To what purpose do you insolently resist? To what purpose do you brazenly refuse? We are submitting to God, and resisting you, so that you will flee from this man (woman). You are guilty before almighty God, whose laws you have transgressed. You are guilty before His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, whom you presumed to tempt, whom you dared to nail to the cross. You are guilty before the whole human race, whom you enticed to drink from the poisoned cup of death. Therefore, I command you, wasteful dragon, in the name of the spotless + Lamb, who has trodden down the viper and the basilisk, and overcome the lion and the dragon, to depart from this man (woman) + (on the brow), to depart from the Church of God + (signing the bystanders). Tremble and flee, as we call on the name of the Lord, before whom the inhabitants of Hell cower, to whom the heavenly Virtues and Powers and Dominions are subject, whom the Cherubim and Seraphim praise with unending cries as they sing: Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts. The Word made flesh + commands you; the Son of God + commands you; Jesus + of Nazareth commands you, who once, when you despised His disciples, forced you to flee in shameful defeat from a man; and when He had cast you out you did not even dare, except by His leave, to enter into a herd of swine. And now as I adjure you in His + name, GET OUT of this man (woman) who is His creature. It is useless to resist His + will. It is hard for you to kick against the + pricks. The longer you delay, the heavier your punishment will be; for it is not men you are despising, but rather Him who rules the living and the dead, who is coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

P: Lord, hear my prayer.

All: And let my cry be heard by you.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you. Let us pray. God of Heaven and earth, God of the angels and archangels, God of the prophets and apostles, God of the martyrs and virgins, God who has power to bestow life after death and rest after toil; for there is no other God than you, nor can there be another true God beside you, the Creator of Heaven and earth, who are truly a King, whose kingdom is without end; we humbly entreat your glorious majesty to deliver this servant of yours from the unclean spirits; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Therefore, I command you and every unclean spirit, every spirit from Hell, every satanic power, in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, who was led into the desert after His baptism by John to vanquish you in your fortress, to cease your assaults against the creature whom He has formed from the dust of the earth for His own honor and glory; to shrink with fear at the sight of this man (woman), seeing in him (her) the image of almighty God, rather than his (her) state of human frailty. Yield then to God, + who by His servant, Moses, cast you and your malice, in the person of Pharaoh and his army, into the depths of the sea. Yield to God, + who, by the singing of psalms on the part of David, His faithful servant, banished you from the heart of King Saul. Yield to God, + who condemned you in the person of Judas Iscariot, the traitor. For He now flails you with His divine scourges, + He in whose sight you and your legions once cried out: “What have we to do with you, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Have you come to torture us before the time?” Now He is driving you back into the everlasting fire, He who at the end of time will say to the wicked: “Depart from me, you accursed, into the everlasting fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.” For you, O evil one, and for your followers there will be worms that never die. An unquenchable fire stands ready for you and for your minions, you prince of accursed murderers, father of lust, instigator of blasphemies, model of obscenity, promoter of heresies, inventor of every profanity. DEPART, then, + impious one, DEPART, + accursed one, DEPART with all your deceits, for God has willed that man should be His temple. Why do you still linger here? Give honor to God the Father + almighty, before whom every knee must bow. Give place to the Lord Jesus + Christ, who shed His most precious blood for man. Give place to the Holy + Spirit, who by His blessed apostle Peter openly struck you down in the person of Simon Magus; who cursed your lies in Annas and Saphira; who smote you in King Herod because he had not given honor to God; who by His apostle Paul afflicted you with the night of blindness in the magician Elymas, and by the mouth of the same apostle bade you to go out of Pythonissa, the soothsayer. BEGONE, + now! BEGONE, + seducer! Your place is in solitude; your abode is in the nest of serpents; get down and crawl with them. This matter takes no delay; for see, the Lord, the ruler comes quickly, kindling fire before Him, and it will run on ahead of Him and encompass His enemies in flames. You might delude man, but God you cannot mock. It is He who CASTS YOU OUT, from whose sight nothing is hidden. It is He who repels you, to whose might all things are subject. It is He who EXPELS YOU, He who has prepared everlasting Hell-fire for you and your demons, from whose mouth shall come a sharp sword, who is coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

5. All the above may be repeated as long as necessary, until the one possessed has been fully freed.

6. It will also help to say devoutly and often over the afflicted person the Lord’s Prayer, the Apostle’s Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.

P: Whoever wills to be saved
* must before all else hold fast to repentance and faith in the cross.

All: Unless one keeps this faith whole and untarnished,
* without doubt he will perish forever.

P: Now this is the summary of our faith:
* that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in unity;

All: Neither confusing the Persons one with the other,
* nor making a distinction in their nature.

P: For the Father is a distinct Person; and so is the Son,
* and so is the Holy Spirit.

All: Yet the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit possess one Godhead,
* co-equal glory, co-eternal majesty.

P: As the Father is, so is the Son,
* so also is the Holy Spirit.

All: The Father is uncreated, the Son is uncreated,
* the Holy Spirit is uncreated.

P: The Father is infinite, the Son is infinite,
* the Holy Spirit is infinite.

All: The Father is eternal, the Son is eternal,
* the Holy Spirit is eternal.

P: Yet they are not three eternals,
* but one eternal God.

All: Even as they are not three uncreated, or three infinites,
* but one uncreated and one infinite God.

P: So likewise the Father is almighty, the Son is almighty,
* the Holy Spirit is almighty.

All: Yet they are not three almighties,
* but they are the one Almighty.

P: Thus the Father is God, the Son is God,
* the Holy Spirit is God.

All: Yet they are not three gods,
* but one God.

P: Thus the Father is Lord, the Son is Lord,
* the Holy Spirit is Lord.

All: Yet there are not three lords,
* but one Lord.

P: For just as Christian truth compels us to profess that each Person is individually God and Lord,
* so does the Christian faith forbid us to hold that there are three gods or lords.

All: The Father was not made by any power;
* He was neither created nor begotten.

P: The Son is from the Father alone,
* neither created nor made, but begotten.

All: The Holy Spirit is from the Father and the Son,
* neither made nor created nor begotten, but He proceeds.

P: So there is one Father, not three; one Son, not three;
* one Holy Spirit, not three.

All: And in this Trinity one Person is not earlier or later, nor is one greater or less;
* but all three Persons are co-eternal and co-equal.

P: In every way, then, as already affirmed,
* unity in Trinity and Trinity in unity is to be worshiped.

All: Whoever, then, wills to be saved
* must agree with this doctrine of the Blessed Trinity.

P: But it is necessary for everlasting salvation
* that one also firmly believe in the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

All: True faith, then, requires us to believe and profess
* that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is both God and man.

P: He is God, begotten of the substance of the Father from eternity;
* He is man, born in time of the substance of His mother.

All: He is perfect God, and perfect man
* subsisting in a rational soul and a human body.

P: He is equal to the Father in His divine nature,
* but less than the Father in His human nature.

All: And though He is God and man,
* yet He is the one Christ, not two.

P: One, however, not by any change of divinity into flesh,
* but by the act of God assuming a human nature.

All: He is one only, not by a mixture of substance,
* but by the oneness of His Person.

P: For, somewhat as the rational soul and the body compose one man,
* so Christ is one Person who is both God and man;

All: Who suffered for our salvation, who descended into Hell,
* who rose again the third day from the dead;

P: Who ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father almighty,
* from there He shall come to judge both the living and the dead.

All: At His coming all men shall rise again in their bodies,
* and shall give an account of their works.

P: And those who have done good shall enter into everlasting life,
* but those who have done evil into everlasting fire.

All: All this is Christian faith,
* and unless one believes it truly and firmly one cannot be saved.

P: Glory be to the Father.

All: As it was in the beginning.

[Here follow a large number of psalms which may be used at the exorcist’s discretion but are not a necessary part of the rite. Some of them occur in other parts of the Rite and are so indicated; the others may be taken from the Psalter. Psalm 90; psalm 67; psalm 69; psalm 53; psalm 117; psalm 34; psalm 30; psalm 21, psalm 3; psalm 10; psalm 12.]

Prayer Following Deliverance

P: Almighty God, we beg you to keep the evil spirit from further bothering this servant of yours, and to keep him far away, never to return. At your command, O Lord, may the goodness and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Redeemer, take possession of this man (woman). May we no longer fear any evil since the Lord is with us; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever.

All: Amen.

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