When asked if he thought priest pedophiles were possessed by the devil and in need of exorcism, Fr. Amorth said no-- explaining that such priests were tempted by Satan, not possessed by him. In his own words:
"I have carried out exorcisms on some priests who had been molested by the devil," he said, without going into details.
"But cases of pedophilia exorcised, no. ... Pedophiles are not possessed by the devil, they are tempted by the devil,"
"They don't need exorcism, they need to be converted, to be converted to God, that's what they need. They need to confess, they need true penitence, true repentance, that's what they need. They're not possessed."
I think the Vatican spin machine is going to have to come up with something better than that to fix its tarnished image. I mean in the wake of all the major sex scandals around the world involving pedophile priests and going back decades, the idea of putting it all down to temptation is just too crazy for words.
Maybe a married woman who uses artificial birth control instead of playing Vatican roulette, or a teenager who masturbates is sinning, but honestly, sodomizing the choirboys is on a whole different level, especially if you are a priest and the choirboys are still singing soprano.
So far the pope is writing letters and issuing apologies while still distancing himself and the Holy See from the debacle in Ireland, the recent German scandal and the rather absurd uncovering of a male prostitution ring in the Vatican itself. No responsibility has been taken. No priests have been defrocked and it's business as usual as far as I can see.
If the Vatican spin machine thinks that trotting out a sweet old exorcist to make apologies for the sins of the " Fathers" is a good idea, I think it had better think again. I don't know what these guys are smoking, but they are certainly not dealing with objective reality. This is the twenty first century, not the Middle Ages. Get a grip, guys. We are dealing with crime as well as sin here. Stop beating around the bush: Take responsibility and DO something. You are the folks who orchestrated the Inquisition, after all. You know how to root out the bad news bears when you want to. Stop dragging your feet.
If I am possessed by a demon I'll give Father Amorth a call. But if my child is molested by a priest, I'm calling the police.