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Reiki teachers have hit out at a priest who branded the Japanese healing methods as the work of Satan, it emerged today. Fr Tom Ingoldsby of the Salesian Order accused patients of the complementary therapy of opening the door to evil and occult forces which have later side effects.
But the Reiki Federation of Ireland (RFI), which regulates the training and practice of the healing method, dismissed the outspoken cleric’s views as being rooted in ignorance and suspicion.
Father Ingoldsby made his remarks in his ’Fast Food for the soul’: in the Open Door newsletter, which is distributed free to 5,000 homes each week in the West Dublin and North Kildare area.
Reiki teacher and RFI co-founder Angela Gorman said it was understandable that some people remained sceptical about complementary therapies but she warned them not to be close-minded to new ideas.
“Some people’s opinions of Reiki are often anchored in ignorance and suspicion rather than pure scientific fact,” said Ms Gorman, a former nurse. “There is a vast difference between being sceptical and being close-minded. Some people just don’t want to open their minds to new concepts.”
Father Ingoldsby wrote in his column: “Many people today are falling for Reiki unaware that they are on a dangerous road, as once the door is opened to Satan, it is extremely difficult to get him out. People who go for a Reiki treatment are exposing themselves to occult forces which may give one a false sense of peace of mind or some type or temporary healing. Everyone should be warned that side effects can materialise later.” Father Ingoldsby, who is based near Portlaoise, went on to cite the case of a Catholic man who reported migraine pain after receiving Reiki treatment: “A priest discerned by prayer that there had been evil channelled into him,” Father Ingoldsby claimed. The cleric also said former Reiki healers witnessed strange spirits entering them and “required deliverance by an experience priest”.

Ms Gorman, who has been teaching Reiki for over a decade and appeared on Rte Late Show last year to defend the therapy, said it was becoming increasingly mainstream in society. She said it has already been used in many Irish hospitals and a transition class in Dublin was also taught it last year. Many public figures like the Prince of Wales openly support the healing method’s benefits. Addressing the World Health Organisation in May, Prince Charles encouraged doctors to take a more holistic view by putting great emphasis on preventative healthcare. Medics at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Centre in New York recently used Reiki on open-heart surgery patients. Ms Gorman has also noticed a large increase in traffic on her website, from curious members of the public.

KonkaniCatholics yahoogroup digest no. 1068 Re: Reiki Teachers Hit Back at Priest's Satanic Warning

Posted by: "noel jude" Fri May 4, 2007

Hello, This is a very good article. I hope more & more people open their eyes to this new demonic force that is entering the society. Many Christians are looking for fast healing method. A huge number of Catholics are also falling prey to this new method of healing. This is purely demonic & very dangerous. Warn your friends & family members to avoid this.
Once again lets talk about this on one to one basis to our friends & our family members. It will make a big difference.

Posted by: "Jennifer D'Souza" Sat May 5, 2007

Dear Michael,
Yet another stronghold of the evil one... in the disguise of alternative medicine or therapy!
Thanks for sharing this article... God Bless You!
Jennifer D'Souza (Mumbai)


February 16, 2006 By Kathleen Ganster

An American Catholic nun performing a Japanese healing art may seem unusual to some, but Sister Mary Jo Mattes believes it's a natural combination. "God is the one in charge. God is the one who is directing the healing," she said. 23.

Sister Mary Jo is a member of the Sisters of St. Francis of Millvale and the Reiki master and teacher in charge of the new Tabor Reiki Center in Millvale.

Reiki is a spiritual healing art in which hands are placed on or near a person and moved in specific positions. Reiki is noninvasive, and clients remain fully clothed.

A Reiki practitioner "transfers universal life force to the recipient," Sister Mary Jo said. The treatment starts with both the client and practitioner asking God for healing, she said. "I ask the client what their desire is then and ask them to be open to God's graces. We then pray and ask for God's direction," she said. "The Reiki practitioner directs the healing energy to various parts of the body, not necessarily where the person may have pain."

Sister Mary Jo, 46, was introduced to Reiki nearly 20 years ago when she was on a retreat.

"I had hurt my back and had Reiki done, but my back actually hurt more. It turned me off to Reiki, although I later learned I really should have stayed with it," she said. "Then a few years later, I decided to try it again and went every day for treatment. After only a couple of treatments, I felt better."

About that same time she saw a brochure advertising Reiki training at the Sophia Center in Cleveland. The center will send a trainer to teach a group of 12 or more, so Sister Mary Jo got a group together for training two times in Millvale. She enjoyed it so much she went to the Sophia Center for more training and had the opportunity to practice Reiki on clients and train others. Although her education and training is in business administration, Sister Mary Jo worked for years at St. Francis Hospital with young people who were dependent on drugs and others in need. Since the hospital closed, she has stepped up her Reiki practice.

Sister Mary Jo had been practicing at the Tabor House of Prayer on Hawthorne Avenue in Millvale, where she lives, but she didn't have enough space there. "I had to put things up and take them down, so I found the [new] location late last year," she said of the center's new site at 715 North Ave., which will hold an open house Sunday.

Dorothy Pfund, of Millvale, is one of Sister Mary Jo's clients and a practitioner of Reiki. "I first went when I fell and hit my head. Of course, I went and had X-rays, but they didn't show anything and I still had pain. I went and they worked on my head and it helped," she said. During a recent treatment, Mrs. Pfund said, "I felt a lot of heat on my head. Sister said it was because I had a head cold. The energy goes where you need it. It is really hard to describe."

Mrs. Pfund is trained as a practitioner but she performs Reiki only on friends.

Some of the practitioners do volunteer work in the community, Sister Mary Jo said. "Glenshaw Presbyterian Church will use Reiki masters in their healing services," she said.

She hopes the center will introduce more people to Reiki and that other practitioners will work from there as well.

"We want to expand our services," she said.

The open house at Tabor Reiki Center, 715 North Ave., Millvale, will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Reiki treatments and refreshments will be offered. For more information, call 412-821-1149 or visit the Web site,
Michael Brown, Spirit Daily is a reliable Catholic writer who exposes New Age error in the US Church


02/07/07 [resources: Ransomed from Darkness and Prayer of the Warrior] Spirit Daily

In case after case, centers run by nuns seeking ways to redefine themselves or raise money are embracing a spiritual method called reiki - which is also sweeping through other parts of the Church - and it is a lesson of why something is defined as occult (or "New Age"). We reported on this several weeks ago: the infiltration of questionable spiritual practices, of which reiki may be the most prevalent, in Catholic retreat centers across the continent. That propensity can be expected to increase as the number of nuns - and their resources - dwindle and as they feel less attached to diocesan authorities.  What is reiki? How does it "work"?  Why is it perilous?
Proponents of reiki believe that there are "vibrational" fields around humans that influence our well-being - energies that surround and interpenetrate. It is similar to the Eastern concept of "ki" or "chi" energy that many non-Christians in Asia believe flows around the human form as sort of an aura or psychic influence. When they are out of balance, manipulating these fields can bring healing, claim those who practice it. Basically, the reiki healer is supposedly affecting or activating the energy of a person with his own energy or channels – sort of a laying on of the hands, but without a vital component: the Holy Spirit.  If such impersonal energy or spiritual forces exist and are manipulated in such a fashion, especially without the Name of Christ, it enters a dangerous area. Evil spirits are attached to it.
Noted a leading reiki master, Pamela Miles, recently: "In a formal session, the recipient lies fully clothed on a treatment table, covered by a blanket if desired. Traditionally, the practitioner places hands lightly on the head and the front and back of the torso, with hand placements varying somewhat among different practitioners. Treatment usually lasts between 45 and ninety minutes, although in a hospital it is typically fifteen to twenty minutes." While such practices may cause some relief (just as psychic healing can, at least temporarily), it invites in spirits of darkness that are only too happy to masquerade as angels of light – if indeed they are not behind the reiki energy to begin with. The devil mimics all that God does, and this includes healing. Just as the Holy Spirit  gives us "words of knowledge," there are psychics who rely on their own occult energy to read thoughts ("telepathy"), divine wisdom from objects  ("psychometry"),  see at a distance "clairvoyance"), and peer into the future ("precognition"). 24.

The  problem is that such power is not only vastly less effective than the force that flows from God and His saints, but also come with the bondage of owing  forces of darkness in return. Psychics, fortunetellers, mediums, and channelers are often very problem-plagued people, and many succumb at an early age. Despite initial relief, those "healed" by them can end up worse than they were to start with, until they go to Jesus. This is no bias against the many good people who have fallen into the deception. It is understandable - especially when one is in pain - to seek any form of relief. And it is wrong to be closed-minded against all that is unknown. We are called to pray for those involved in such practices as we pray for our own balance, open-mindedness, and discernment.

Many are those who argue that the Vatican went too far, for example, in condemning (as it did, in a document about the New Age, Jesus Christ the Bearer of the Water of Life) the practice of acupuncture, which also touches on the same surrounding or interpenetrating forces.
But the Catholic Church is wisely cautious (the "narrow gate") and clearly it  is the Holy Spirit  Whom we are to go to when we want to cause a spiritual affect - not our own or some other cosmic field of "energy."
Reiki began with the teachings of a man named Mikao Usui in the early 1920s and is now practiced throughout the world - entering Catholic circles in a big way during the last decade [see previous story on extent of infiltration]. Its spread indicates both a disaffection with traditional Christianity and a lack of teaching about such topics from the pulpit. Indeed, despite specific Vatican admonitions, parishes themselves have been known to sponsor reiki events and priests have spoken of it from the altar.
Those who are apprehensive about such practices are looked upon as overly wary, closed-minded, or even paranoid. If so, they are joined by the Vatican and many experts on occult dangers. The argument: reiki is not really manipulation of occult energy but simply a meditation technique in which the healer acts as a conduit to reorient a person's own energy.
"Healing pulsations" are activated. It is used for everything from anxiety, sleep disorders, and indigestion to diabetes and cancer. Tests have shown such benefits - at least in the short term - that major hospitals have allowed the practice, including Catholic ones (such as St. Vincent's Hospital's Comprehensive Cancer Center in New York). It comes at a time, ironically, when practices such as Eucharistic Adoration have been resisted by chapels, churches, and convents.
But in fact traditional Christianity has produced healings that are vastly more numerous, time-tested, and impressive.  Thousands of cures were attributed, for example, to a humble Canadian monk named Brother André Bessette at an oratory in Montreal. His cures were effected largely through treating those who came to see him with olive oil from a lamp that burned in front of a statue of St. Joseph. When it is said that thousands were cured, such is meant literally.
Like reiki practitioners, Brother Andre often put his hands on the infirm for forty minutes and in some cases even hours -- massaging the areas of illness with the holy oil or a medal. The difference: the energy Blessed Andre invoked was the Holy Spirit, through the intercession of Christ and with the help in particular of a truly hidden power named St. Joseph.

[Resources: Prayer of the Warrior. See too, Vatican Document: "Jesus Christ the Bearer of the Water of Life"]

Towards the end of John Paul II's pontificate, the Vatican issued a document about the New Age that was reviewed, one can assume, by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, even though his congregation was not redactor of the actual paper, which could be described as both a report and an instruction.
It would do well for the U.S. bishops to revisit that document ("Jesus Christ the Bearer of the Water of Life") and make certain that parishes, convents, seminaries, and retreat houses across North America understand and more importantly heed Rome's definition of what is meant by the "new age" -- a refined form of occultism that looks upon God as more an energy and impersonal, psychic force in classic pagan perspective and is expressly prohibited by Rome. For despite that prohibition, which was clearly stated in the 2003 instruction, many are those who report New Age or Eastern-style practices that have been allowed and even promoted in church halls, convents, during seminars, and occasionally from the pulpit. It's an insidious infiltration that thus far has not received nearly the attention it warrants [see bottom] -- putting, as it does, those who are exposed to it into potential touch with the dark side, which comes as an angel of light.
I invite you to send such cases here, if they are occurring in your parish. In just the past week, we have linked to articles about nuns in northeast Philadelphia who instruct in massage, energy, kinesiology, and "therapeutic touch" (which some say is akin to psychic healing). At any rate, they are described as "nuns" at the Center for Human Integration. They also use "reiki," an ancient form of therapeutic touch that taps into occult "ki" or "ch’i" forces.

"There is a remarkable variety of approaches for promoting holistic health, some derived from ancient cultural traditions, whether religious or esoteric," says the Vatican document. "Advertising connected with the New Age covers a wide range of practices as acupuncture, biofeedback, chiropractic, kinesiology, homeopathy, iridology, massage, and various kinds of 'bodywork' (such as orgonomy, Feldenkrais, reflexology, rolfing, polarity massage, therapeutic touch, etc), meditation, and visualization... The source of healing is said to be within ourselves, something we reach when we are in touch with our inner or cosmic energy."

There it is in black and white -- the Vatican definition of New Age -- and yet confusion (a mark of the enemy) reigns. There are nuns into drumming circle prayer. There are sisters who are reiki masters. On church grounds, there are haunted mazes*. *labyrinths– Michael Prabhu 25.

I don't pretend to know definitively all that is wrong or right but I know we are to follow the Vatican and that evil masquerades itself.

What are Catholics doing involved in something that is expressly cited in negative fashion in Vatican documents?
"This weekend will provide for a deepening of the experiences of meditation, prayer, journaling, yoga and reiki. There will be ample time for practicing techniques, quiet reflection and sharing. Donation: $75 (includes $25 non-refundable deposit). St. Joseph Center, Mount Saint Joseph, Wheeling," says an announcement from West Virginia. At the left are illustrations from the West Virginia Institute for Spirituality (for further info., it says, "e-mail Sr. Carole Riley, Ph.D.").

"Prepare the Way of the Lord -- Saturday, December 9 (10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.)," says another ad. "Participants will discover ways of praying with their bodies using creative movement as the sacred scriptures are explored in the season of Advent. (Wear comfortable clothing). Presenter:  Sr. Molly Maloney, OSF, M.A., LMT. Offering: $35 (lunch included)."

What's going on in West Virginia? What's going on in dozens of other dioceses? Should "St. Joseph" really be uttered in the same breath as Buddha, or "tai chi"?
There are Catholic centers that offer an "ancient, sacred tradition" called the "labyrinth" (seven cycles and seven turns representing the seven stages of life). Some argue that it is okay and that there is even a labyrinth at a French cathedral at Chartres. There is the enneagram, which claims to determine types of personalities.

In Pennsylvania are the "Sisters of the Humility of Mary" who offer yoga and even holistic health care for animals.

I'm not competent to judge the esoteric nature of all such practices (no one is against feeding a dog well), but again it seems to contravene the Vatican. "The important thing to note," said the document, "is that God is reduced in certain New Age practices so as furthering the advancement of the individual."
"New Age appeals to people imbued with the values of modern culture. Freedom, authenticity, self-reliance, and the like are all held to be sacred." The Vatican definition has been ignored, and it appears to be nothing less than a full-blown crisis -- with the question of how Catholics can so openly ignore authority.

"From this place we respond to the needs of families, youth, the elderly, homeless, prisoners, and immigrants in sites that include Ohio, Pennsylvania, District of Columbia, Florida, Kentucky, New Jersey, Michigan, Nebraska, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia," says the website in West Virginia. "Internationally, we serve in Haiti and have served in Africa, Bangladesh, Chile, El Salvador, Mexico, and Vietnam."

Reiki, drumming circles, medicine dolls: it involves nuns across the Western Hemisphere. Canada. The U.S.
Writes one concerned reader, "It didn't take me long, but I found convent after convent, parish after parish, Catholic retreat center after retreat center, engaged in reiki and more. Is the Vatican aware? Aware that so many Roman Catholics are... Pagan Catholics?" Strikes me as a good question.

[see also (links): Villa Maria and medicine dolls, Sisters of St. Francis and reiki, nun who is reiki master, convent reiki therapy, Franciscan healing touch, Franciscan tai chi, the labyrinth with Sisters of Saints Cyril and Methodius, labyrinth at St. Joseph retreat center in Boston, reiki in Cincinnati, labyrinth in New York, Sisters of St. Joseph of Lyon: ancient Indian healing, Third Order Sister of St. Francis and naprapathic treatments Tai chi during Lent, labyrinth in Ontario, labyrinth in Michigan, drumming circle prayer, Holy Cross sisters and the labyrinth Dominicans and reiki, and haunted labyrinth at church]



The infiltration of New Age practices into convents and retreat houses operated by Catholic nuns appears to have reached the level of an epidemic, with so many reports that at times it appears difficult to find one that doesn't allow such spirituality, at least to some degree. Such may be hyperbole but what is not hyperbole is that esoteric spirituality has spread -- in alarming measure -- through what is left of female American religious in a way that recalls the startling prevalence of sexual abuse among male religious counterparts. That's not to say that most religious have gone occult. And it is certainly not to cast aspersions. The majority of nuns are in their seventies or eighties -- beyond active involvement in activities such as operating a retreat center. Moreover, those who are linked to these practices often appear to be good, well-meaning women who have simply followed the spirit of our time.

But the question is what that spirit is and the trend -- contravening Vatican teaching -- is as widespread as it is troublesome. One thing is clear: the call of Vatican Two for women to distinguish themselves spiritually has been answered in virtually every part of North America in a totally unexpected way: establishment of mysterious, Eastern-style meditation.

When we ran an article on this several weeks ago, we were deluged by instances -- many dozens -- in which Eastern contemplation, labyrinths, reiki, or other exotic non-Catholic methods of spiritual development were present at Catholic retreat centers -- almost surely unknown to the Vatican.   

The examples seem daunting, and because of their serious nature, we are going to let this report proceed at length.

One example: the Portiuncula Center for Prayer, modeled after St. Francis and run by Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart. Located less than an hour southwest of downtown Chicago, this Catholic center offers therapeutic massage, reiki, reflexology, holistic facials, and Zen Shiatsu (which taps into the "energy" points around the body). 26.

It also has a "labyrinth" which it describes as "an ancient circular diagram" consisting of a "single concentric circular path with no possibility of going astray. The path winds throughout and becomes a mirror for where we are in our lives; it touches our sorrows and releases our joys…" Labyrinths are a meditation, relaxation, and spiritual tool that invite a person to walk towards the center with a problem, prayer, or idea… 

Two other remarkably widespread practices are reiki, which taps into the "energy" around us, and the "enneagram" -- a controversial way of categorizing personalities. The energy of reiki is the "ki" of Eastern religions, which tends too rapidly toward psychic energies and earth spirits. The symbol of the enneagram was promoted by a famed occultist name Gurdjieff and bears certain resemblances to the way personality types are discerned through a zodiac (though in this case the discernment comes by way of "self evaluation").

At another Franciscan center in Scottsdale, Arizona, is not only the enneagram but "aqua yoga." Many Catholic convents, retreat houses, and parishes are embracing this technique of meditation and relaxation -- often as a mere physical tool but nonetheless in contradiction to a Vatican document on the New Age, "Jesus Christ the Bearer of the Water of Life", that prohibits it

The concern: yoga is from Eastern pagan religions and like reiki can tend toward a deeper involvement in mysterious energies. In some cases, "mantras" (a word used over and over) are employed and such mantras can be the name of Hindu or other "gods." The Beatles brought a focus on yoga when they studied it with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the 1960s. Before that, it was popularized by deep occultists known as Theosophists.

In some cases, centers that hold seminars in reiki and enneagram are receiving funds through diocesan appeals… [A large number of examples of Catholic New Age centers in convents, retreat houses, parishes, are given]

Does this not matter to the bishops?

Our Lady of Prompt Succor Church in Alexandria, Louisiana. What is going on there?

"How glad I am to see a place to report rampant New Age practices in Catholic retreat centers," writes yet one more viewer. "Here are a couple of places I wish to report.  The first is the Jesuit Spirituality Center in Grand Coteau, Louisiana.  Click on the link, scroll down, and you will find retreats on the labyrinth, Zen, Christian yoga (whatever that is!), Meyers/Briggs personality inventory, reiki, and special retreat for gays and lesbians."

"My mother was New Age almost before the New Age got here, and ended up worshiping Satan," notes a viewer, who like many preferred anonymity. "My twin sister is New Age (deeply) and seemingly can't be talked or prayed out of it… My sister is a medium and channels spirits who sound so wise, profound, and compassionate that their writings fooled an abbot of a monastery into approval. (Her vocabulary, when she is channeling, is far above her own vocabulary.)  I know that lately I've been hearing hints from her that she likes the idea of 'androgyne,' a combining of male and female in one person to make them 'complete.' To me that commits an error so severe that the person has crossed over into Satanism."

"It seems to me that the devil made huge inroads into Catholicism by distorting the Vatican II teaching that Catholics should respect whatever of truth lies in other religions," frets an e-mailer named Trudi Lawrence. "Monks, nuns, and probably priests mistakenly and unguardedly went looking for truths there that they thought Catholicism didn't have."

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