Christian groups strongly opposed the gathering of about 700 Satanic worshippers late last month to unveil a devil statue in Detroit, which depicts the occult idol named Baphomet. Worse, these demon worshippers were asked to sign over their souls to Satan during the gathering.
Media organisations seem to have taken the gathering of Satanic worshippers lightly. TIME Magazine called the unveiling event of the devil statue as "harmlessly festive" and even compared it to "a cross between an underground rave and a meticulously planned Halloween party." FOX News meanwhile described Lucifer as a "literary figure."
However, Fr. James Martin, a Roman Catholic priest belonging to the order of Jesuits, strongly reminded the public that the gathering of devil worshippers is not a joke.
Martin said he wonders if the Satanic group really wanted to push for religious freedom, as it claims it does, or just want to attract controversy.
"It's hard to discern which motivation is stronger for the group: the desire to push back on religious groups who, they apparently feel, have a monopoly on religious freedom in the public square, or the desire simply to troll and stir up trouble," the Jesuit priest said in an opinion article posted on America Magazine.
He also warned the Satanic group that its members are "playing with fire" by erecting the devil statue, recalling all the exorcisms he has seen performed before.
"These people have no clue what kind of forces they are dealing with. In my life as a Jesuit priest, and especially as a spiritual director, I have seen people struggling with real-life evil," Martin said.
"I'm describing not only my belief, but my experience. Evil is real. How Satan fits into this, I'm not exactly sure, but I believe that a personified force is somehow behind this," he added.