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Philippine exorcists back priest arrested for 'religious insult'

Father Cabading was in jail till May 21 for making statements against the alleged 1948 Marian apparition in Batangas
Father Winston Cabading

Father Winston Cabading (Photo: https://www.rvasia.org)

Published: May 26, 2023 11:44 AM GMT
Updated: May 30, 2023 04:58 AM GMT

The Philippine Association of Exorcists and lay groups have rallied behind the Dominican exorcist priest who was arrested for making offensive remarks about the alleged Marian apparition in the Catholic-majority nation.

“We stand with Father Winston Cabading, OP, in his obedience and union with the pope and the Philippine bishops of the Catholic Church with regards to this issue,” the association said in a statement on May 26.

Several Catholic lay groups likewise denounced Cabading’s arrest on May 13, saying the charges against him were fabricated to silence him.

“The Resolution of the Prosecutor [is] on a different date at a different address, not the address where Father Cabading actually resides in Nasugbu, Batangas,” St. Michael Religious Lay Alliance in the capital Manila said in a statement.

Cabading, 57, was in jail till May 21 for making statements against the alleged Marian apparition in Batangas, south of Manila, in 1948, which the Vatican ruled “did not have a supernatural origin.”

Cabading was arrested following a complaint by a former trial court judge and Marian devotee, Hariet Demetriou, who accused the priest of offending religious sentiments.

“I didn’t know that an arrest warrant" was issued. "It was served during the weekend, to make sure that I would spend days and nights in jail. The complainant was influential for being a former trial court judge,” Cabading said during a press conference on May 24.

Cabading is reported to have allegedly offended religious feelings when he said fake apparitions in the Church were purportedly manifestations of the devil.

Demetriou called Cabading a “rabid dog” when he accused the devil of appearing even in seemingly holy events like the apparition of the Our Lady of Mediatrix in Lipa, Batangas province.

“During the 4th national conference on the Ministry of Spiritual Liberation and Exorcism held in August 2019, Cabading said 'how demons can appear to be holy… mimicking anything they (believers) want,'” according to the complaint by Demetriu.

“They [demons] can ape or mimic or pretend or appear like God, Jesus Christ, the Blessed Virgin Mary, an angel of light, a holy angel, a saint in heaven, the souls of the deceased, or even a living human being,” Cabading reportedly told the gathering in 2019.

Although the exorcist did not refer to Our Lady of Mediatrix of All Graces in Batangas, Demetriou said, it could be “easily” inferred that he was referring to Mary under the title of the Our Lady of Mediatrix of All Graces.

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) is sticking to the decision of the Vatican on the apparition.

“We have already told exorcists and even instructed diocesan bishops to instruct their clergy about the truth of the decision. Declarations should not scandalize Marian devotees, who believe in the veracity of the Lipa apparition,” father Bernardo Pantin, executive secretary of the bishops' conference told UCA News.

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1 Comments on this Story
ROB MARROW
It's a good thing you can't be thrown in jail here in the USA (yet) for offending the rather fantastical followers of the fake Medjugorje scam.
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