There Is Only One


Here's a story that will make you want to rip off your brown scapular in disgust and throw it away like Dirty Harry: A group of laymen appear to have vandalized St. Paul's* Cathedral of St. Paul while conducting an unauthorized anti-gay exorcism. A group dedicated to using sacramentals to cleanse places where gays take communion is suspected of having put salt and holy oil around the steps, doors, and collection baskets, a mess that Fr. Michael Skluzacek, rector of the cathedral, estimates will cost a few thousand dollars to clean up.

Of course, the Roman Catholic Church doesn't teach, yet, that homosexuality can be cured through exorcism, and it's unclear whether the cracker-barrel exorcists in this case were trying to purge gayness itself or just the devilry associated with Rainbow Sash members who attend mass at the cathedral. But there is a very lively culture of demon-binding among evangelical protestants, some of whom cast out rich menus of lust demons, homsexuality demons, anti-Semitism demons, etc., when they believe people are suffering from any of these maladies. On that note, I highly recommend Michael Cuneo's American Exorcism, a very entertaining survey of contemporary exorcisms and demon-casting.

* Correction: Having come upon this story first in a Duluth paper, I initially misidentified the cathedral's home city as Duluth. I meant no disrespect to either St. Paul (a city I have visited and enjoyed immensely) or Duluth (a city I have never visited and have no opinion about). Thanks to reader "Dylan" for catching the error.

NEXT: Kramer vs. Cole

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  1. Does that exorcism thing work? Because they say if you s##k a d##k once then you are a ### forever, even though it takes building 100 bridges to be a bridge builder. (Or something like that).

    So if you cast the gay demons out of a gay guy, and the gay guy wasn’t a gay virgin. He is still gay according to the maxim mentioned above.

    So what happens to a gay guy without gay demons??? Does he simply not get action? That would suck to be him (or her).

    Either way, how do I go about getting some of the demons of lust that have been cast out of other people? I just want to try them out for a little while, if it doesn’t work out, I’ll get them exorcised.

  2. Why does this bulletin board pick the most obscure issues and present them as if they are the most serious problems in the world? Gay exoricsm?

  3. because writing about commercial zoning day in and day out is fucking boring.

    i mean, duh.

    gay exorcism? good stuff! commercial zoning? SNOOZE!

    besides, casting out gay demons seems to be pretty popular amongst some of the population. it’s important for a magazine like reason to address this trend in as timely and free-markety a manner as possible.

  4. dhex: uh, okay. Can you suggest another site for me to visit that’s a little more gripping?

  5. Beatty,
    I dunno, I like the occasional obscure article. Lots of important issues get brought up here and discussed and lots of non-important ones. H&R is hardly unique. The Corner and Instapundit commonly have silly filler posts as well. Besides, it’s interesting to discuss the occasional oddball issues.

    Besides, it’s the day after Thanksgiving. The biggest news today is Peyton Manning’s pace to destroy Marino’s record.

  6. B Beatty, how about the RealDoll ( site? Definitely more gripping than this one usually is, except when Jennifer tells those stories about her waitressing days in college…

  7. Douglas, you made me laugh, so I think get Mo’s point about post-turkey day.

    Sense of humor is good. Glad to see it’s alive and well.

  8. “Can you suggest another site for me to visit that’s a little more gripping?”


  9. Not in Duluth – it’s the Cathedral of St. Paul in – wait for it – St. Paul. From the cathedral, you can almost throw a rock to Garisson Keillor’s house! In fact, I recommend doing just that. (Kidding, lawyers!)

  10. “Can you suggest another site for me to visit that’s a little more gripping?”


    if things get bad enough you and mr. alex jones can go halfsies on a sense of humor. 🙂

  11. Commercial zoning is not boring.

  12. Dylan,

    I think I know why a good irish catholic(?) boy like Mr. Cavanaugh would say that St. Paul’s is in Duluth. For sarcasm! You know, for the same Reason (yuk, yuk) that people yell “In the city of Duluth!” at the Rocky Horror Show when riff-raff talks about the “Planet transexual, in the galaxy of Transylvania (or is it the other way around?)…

  13. Aleister Crowley in his book “Magick in Theory and Practice” has some remarkably effective banishing rituals. I can testify from personal experience – they work.


  14. B Beatty,

    (a) Its not a “bulletin board”; its a blog.

    (b) For someone who constantly disses and otherwise complains about Hit n’ Run, you sure do come here a lot.

  15. Does anyone know how unauthorized gay exorcisms differ from the authorized ones?

  16. Has it occurred to anyone that this might be a fake “hate crime” of the Tawana Brawley variety?

  17. Kwais,

    The same way killing is distinguished from execution.

    Killing has more paperwork on the back end than the front.


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