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Exorcisms Driving out the devil in Switzerland

Every year, about 1400 people ask Swiss churches for help with exorcisms, and the number is growing. (SRF/swissinfo.ch) 

The practice of ridding people of the devil or evil spirits is alive and well in Switzerland. The country boasts a total of six exorcists that can help the “possessed”. Reporters from the “Rundschau” current affairs programme of Swiss Public Television SRF travelled to Chur in the east of the country, where the church has three of them. They spoke to exorcist Cesare Truqui, and the person he was trying to help, Laura, who says she is cursed. 

They also met a Salvation Army officer, who runs an exorcism school. He says about 2,000 people come to him every year, around 900 of whom are “demonised”.

Not everyone is pleased with people resorting to the supernatural to solve problems. Samuel Pfeifer, a professor of psychiatry and a practising psychotherapist, believes that exorcists are irresponsible.  According to him, they deprive mentally disturbed people of the psychiatric guidance and medication that they so badly need.