Written by: Katherine Braunstein
On Tuesday, October 4th, Newman Catholic Campus Ministry hosted “A Night with the Exorcist” which featured experienced exorcist, Father Lampert speaking on his experiences during exorcisms he has witnessed and has performed. Father Lampert spoke at MSU six years ago giving the same talk, and it was extremely exciting for the community to welcome him back. Newman Catholic had roughly three hundred people attend this event, mostly MSU students, but it was open to the public. Many students from other colleges and universities in the area, as well as MSU alumni, also attended. The purpose of this talk was for Father Lampert to inform his audience of the true evil he has seen in the world, and how the devil can take over the human being.
Father Lampert stated his “obedience to the bishop” was what got him into exorcisms. He continued “I go wherever the bishop tells me to go, and I do what is asked of me”. During his speech, he mentioned the numerous phone calls he receives on a regular basis of people who have come to him needing help claiming someone they know is possessed. He then went on to explain how there is a process in which he can determine whether or not a person is actually possessed, versus someone simply faking it for attention. One of the final stages he mentioned was submitting the case to his bishop, and from there a proper exorcism can take place if needed. Father Lampert gave the necessities of an exorcism, emphasizing that it must take place in a sacred space. He then said that certain practices need to happen such as speaking to the demon, and using a crucifix or any other type of holy presence to aggravate the demon. He says that “by speaking to the demon, we are identifying it, and therefore lowering its power over the person”. Father Lampert also stated that exorcisms cannot have random people witnessing it, but only those who are training to perform them themselves.
After going through the stages of an exorcism, Father Lampert shared two of his experiences that he said scared him the most. One instance was watching a priest perform an exorcism during his training when a man levitated off of the ground, and with a touch of a crucifix, the man returned to the floor. Another was when a woman’s eyes rolled to the back of her head, and she began guzzling out of her mouth. Father Lampert states that the priest simply wiped her mouth, and continued with the exorcism.
This event had a great impact on the audience, especially many of the students. Montclair State junior Kareem Azer said that this event “reminded me of who I truly am in Christ, where I should find my identity, and that I want to change”. Junior Colin Pope from NJIT stated that “this event was extremely informative”, and MSU alumni Christian Spanella said that “I missed the last time Father came six years ago, and I knew I could not miss it this time. This was something I needed to take notes for. I loved the reassurance of hope Father Lampert spoke of tonight”. MSU and Newman Catholic Campus Ministry are extremely grateful for Father Lampert and his talk, and hopes he will return again in the future.