Night of the living…demons? On Friday, Oct. 30, Destination America is inviting viewers to take part in the first-ever televised exorcism on the network’s two-hour live special, Exorcism: Live!
In a press release, Destination America explained that scare-fanatics will be able to watch multiple live camera feeds set up around the home where the exorcism will take place, all from the comforts of their own home. And the actual premises? The St. Louis house that inspired the classic 1973 horror flick The Exorcist.
The event will be hosted by Chris Jacobs, a former host for The Insider and a current correspondent for Entertainment Tonight. Also on-hand for the creepy evening will be psychic Chip Coffey, who has appeared as a medium on several paranormal shows, and the cast from Destination America’s series Ghost Asylum.
“The saying ‘the truth is stranger than fiction’ has never been more true than in the case of the Exorcist house,” Jane Latman, general manager of Destination America, said in a press release. “The real story was so much more horrifying than the book or movie depicted, making it one of the most terrifying places in America.”
The real-life incident took place in 1949, when Jesuit priests from Saint Louis University performed an exorcism on a 14-year-old boy who was believed to be possessed by the devil himself.
What followed — as detailed in a diary from one of the Jesuits involved — was some seriously paranormal activity, including the boy’s bed violently shaking on its own and scratch marks appearing on his body, apparently trying to spell out words from the other side.
The case remains one of the most talked-about paranormal events in modern history.
Not everyone is on board with the Halloween special, however.
The Archdiocese of St. Louis released a statement warning about the dangers of having and filming such an event just ahead of the scheduled live show.
“Given the public nature of this event, the Archdiocese of St. Louis — which is not involved in this dangerous endeavor — deems it necessary to educate and warn the public about the dangers of participating in such activities,” the statement read.
According to auxiliary bishop emeritus Robert Hermann, “Any attempt to use the solemn Rite of Exorcism as entertainment exposes all participators to the danger of future hidden satanic attack. We cannot play games with Satan and expect to win.”
Exorcism: Live! will air on Destination America on Friday, Oct. 30, at 9 p.m. EST.
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