While this might sound like the plot of some supernatural horror movie – it’s not. A bishop in Columbia says a city there is so crime-ridden and wicked, that it must be doused with holy water to exorcise it of evil.
Before you think the bishop may be exaggerating things, consider that Buenaventura is considered Columbia’s most violent city.
There are warring gangs which residents call “los malos” (the bad guys in English). In the first five months of this year, the town has seen 51 murders. The city is known for its “chop houses” where victims are slaughtered. In 2014, a Human Rights Watch report gave details on the dismemberment of people and numerous disappearances.
Only eight days before the bishop’s announcement, a 10-year-old girl had been found dead, with her body showing signs of torture.
It’s only obvious that if you need to exorcise an entire city of evil, it’s a large-scale undertaking. Monsignor Rubén Darío Jaramillo Montoya, bishop of Buenaventura, Columbia, is borrowing a helicopter from the Navy to be able to drop enough holy water from the skies to cover the entire city below.
The bishops plan to perform an aerial exorcism of sorts. The port city celebrates a festival of its patron saint on July 13 and 14, and it is on those dates that the city will be doused. Bishop Montoya said the aim was to “to see if we exorcise all those demons that are destroying our port.”
“We want to go around the whole of Buenaventura from the air and pour holy water onto it,” Bishop Montoya told a Colombian radio station. “So that God’s blessing comes and gets rid of all the wickedness that is in our streets.”
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” – Ephesians 6:12
The Holy Scriptures tell us that evil is more than a word or an idea. It is actually a force. Evil is the force that tempts and motivates some human beings to engage in wickedness. This helps explain why some acts of evil are so horrific, they seem beyond human comprehension.
The Bible tells us that we are not only battling against evil people or ‘flesh and blood’ – but evil itself. Ultimately, this is the force that needs to be defeated.