- Dec 3, 2020
San Francisco’s archbishop called a district attorney’s decision to prosecute protesters arrested for toppling a St. Junipero Serra statue outside a Catholic church on charges of felony vandalism “a breakthrough moment for Catholics.”
In popular culture, exorcism often serves as a plot device in chilling films about demonic possession. This month, two Catholic archbishops showed a different face of exorcism – performing the rite at well-attended outdoor ceremonies to drive out any evil spirits lingering after acrimonious protests.
During this ongoing pandemic, the commitment of health care workers to treat COVID-19 patients even at risk to their own health and lives — and some have died — is an illustration of Judeo-Christian values still at work in the larger society, said Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone of San Francisco.
The Archbishop of San Francisco performed a short exorcism ceremony Saturday outside a Catholic church where protesters had earlier toppled a statue of Father Junipero Serra, saying the ceremony was intended to drive out evil and defend the image of Serra.
San Francisco’s archbishop plans to conduct an exorcism Oct. 17 at the site of a now-toppled statue of St. Junipero Serra at St. Rafael Mission Church in San Rafael.