A Simple Exorcism
for Priests or Laity
Prayer Against Satan and the Rebellious Angels
Published by Order of His Holiness Pope Leo XIII
The following is a simple exorcism
prayer that can be said by priests or laity. The term “exorcism”
does NOT always denote a solemn exorcism involving a person possessed by
the devil. In general, the term denotes prayers to “curb the power of the
devil and prevent him from doing harm.” As St. Peter had written in Holy
Scripture, “your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking
whom he may devour.” (1 St.Peter 5,8)
The Holy Father exhorts priests
to say this prayer as often as possible, as a simple exorcism to curb the
power of the devil and prevent him from doing harm. The faithful also may
say it in their own name, for the same purpose, as any approved prayer.
Its use is recommended whenever action of the devil is suspected, causing
malice in men, violent temptations and even storms and various calamities.
It could be used as a solemn exorcism (an official and public ceremony,
in Latin), to expel the devil. It would then be said by a priest, in the
name of the Church and only with a Bishop's permission.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of
the Holy Ghost. Amen.
Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel
Most glorious Prince of the Heavenly Armies, Saint
Michael the Archangel, defend us in “our battle against principalities
and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, against the spirits
of wickedness in the high places” (Eph., 6,12). Come to the assistance
of men whom God has created to His likeness and whom He has redeemed at
a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Holy Church venerates thee
as her guardian and protector; to thee, the Lord has entrusted the souls
of the redeemed to be led into heaven. Pray therefore the God of Peace
to crush Satan beneath our feet, that he may no longer retain men captive
and do injury to the Church. Offer our prayers to the Most High, that without
delay they may draw His mercy down upon us; take hold of “the dragon, the
old serpent, which is the devil and Satan”, bind him and cast him into
the bottomless pit ... “that he may no longer seduce the nations” (Apoc.
In the Name of Jesus Christ, our God and Lord, strengthened
by the intercession of the Immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Blessed
Michael the Archangel, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul and all the
Saints. (and powerful in the holy authority of our ministry)*,
we confidently undertake to repulse the attacks and deceits of the devil.
* Lay people
omit the parenthesis above.
God arises; His enemies are scattered and those who hate Him flee before
Him. As smoke is driven away, so are they driven; as wax melts before the
fire, so the wicked perish at the presence of God.
V. Behold the Cross of the Lord, flee bands of enemies.
R. The Lion of the tribe of Juda, the offspring of David, hath
V. May Thy mercy, Lord, descend upon us.
R. As great as our hope in Thee.
(The crosses below indicate a blessing to be given if
a priest recites the Exorcism; if a lay person recites it, they indicate
the Sign of the Cross to be made silently by that person.)
We drive you from us, whoever you may be, unclean
spirits, all satanic powers, all infernal invaders, all wicked legions,
assemblies and sects. In the Name and by the power of Our Lord Jesus Christ,
+ may you be snatched away and driven from
the Church of God and from the souls made to the image and likeness of
God and redeemed by the Precious Blood of the Divine Lamb. +
Most cunning serpent, you shall no more dare to deceive the human race,
persecute the Church, torment God's elect and sift them as wheat. +
The Most High God commands you, + He with
whom, in your great insolence, you still claim to be equal. “God who wants
all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (I Tim.
2,4). God the Father commands you. + God the
Son commands you. + God the Holy Ghost commands
you. + Christ, God's Word made flesh, commands
you; + He who to save our race outdone through
your envy, “humbled Himself, becoming obedient even unto death” (Phil.2,8);
He who has built His Church on the firm rock and declared that the gates
of hell shall not prevail against Her, because He will dwell with Her “all
days even to the end of the world” (Matt. 28,20). The sacred Sign of the
Cross commands you, + as does also the power
of the mysteries of the Christian Faith. +
The glorious Mother of God, the Virgin Mary, commands you; +
she who by her humility and from the first moment of her Immaculate Conception
crushed your proud head. The faith of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul,
and of the other Apostles commands you. +
The blood of the Martyrs and the pious intercession of all the Saints command
Thus, cursed dragon, and you, diabolical legions, we adjure you by the
living God, + by the true God, +
by the holy God, + by the God “who so loved
the world that He gave up His only Son, that every soul believing in Him
might not perish but have life everlasting” (St.John 3, 16); stop deceiving
human creatures and pouring out to them the poison of eternal damnation;
stop harming the Church and hindering her liberty. Begone, Satan, inventor
and master of all deceit, enemy of man's salvation. Give place to Christ
in Whom you have found none of your works; give place to the One, Holy,
Catholic and Apostolic Church acquired by Christ at the price of His Blood.
Stoop beneath the all-powerful Hand of God; tremble and flee when we invoke
the Holy and terrible Name of Jesus, this Name which causes hell to tremble,
this Name to which the Virtues, Powers and Dominations of heaven are humbly
submissive, this Name which the Cherubim and Seraphim praise unceasingly
repeating: Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord, the God of Hosts.
V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto Thee.
V. May the Lord be with thee.
R. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.
God of heaven, God of earth, God of Angels, God
of Archangels, God of Patriarchs, God of Prophets, God of Apostles, God
of Martyrs, God of Confessors, God of Virgins, God who has power to give
life after death and rest after work: because there is no other God than
Thee and there can be no other, for Thou art the Creator of all things,
visible and invisible, of Whose reign there shall be no end, we humbly
prostrate ourselves before Thy glorious Majesty and we beseech Thee to
deliver us by Thy power from all the tyranny of the infernal spirits, from
their snares, their lies and their furious wickedness. Deign, O Lord, to
grant us Thy powerful protection and to keep us safe and sound. We beseech
Thee through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.
V. From the snares of the devil,
R. Deliver us, O Lord.
V. That Thy Church may serve Thee in peace and liberty:
R. We beseech Thee to hear us.
V. That Thou may crush down all enemies of Thy Church:
R. We beseech Thee to hear us.
(Holy water is sprinkled in the place where we may be.)