August 3, 2019 1:34 pm
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A Catholic Bishop plans to spray holy water from a helicopter to exorcise the demons he says are plaguing his town.

Monsignor Rubén Darío Jaramillo Montoya, bishop of Buenaventura, Colombia, is borrowing a navy copter to deluge the city. “We want to go around the whole of Buenaventura from the air and pour holy water onto it… to see if we exorcise all those demons that are destroying our port,” Montoya told a local radio station. “So that God’s blessing comes and gets rid of all the wickedness that is in our streets.”

Colombia’s busiest port, Buenaventura has been ravaged by paramilitary gangs, who extort, kidnap and terrorize locals. “Los Malos” as the guerrillas are known, meet resistance with horrific violence: Victims are dismembered while still alive. Their body parts often wash up on shore.

“In Buenaventura we have to get rid of the devil to see if we can return the tranquility that the city has lost with so many crimes, acts of corruption and so much evil and drug trafficking,” Montoya, 52, told reporters.

It will be a great public demonstration for the entire community, where we will pour holy water to see if so many bad things end and the devil goes out of here.”

Human Rights Watch has issued a report detailing Buenaventura’s history of abductions and killings by gangs known to maintain “chop-up houses” where victims are slaughtered.

Although there have been efforts to tackle violence by creating a “humanitarian zone” in the city, Mr Montoya said there had been 51 murders in 2019 so far.

Last year the Vatican announced a new training course for exorcism because of the increased demand for “deliverance ministry”.

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This post was written by Nadia Vella