When I was about 10-12 years-old some friends of mine brought out a Ouija board at their house one evening. We turned off all of the lights and started messing around with it. There were no strange voices but I do remember that we were all freaked out because of the name given by the "spirit" of the board. It was someone we all knew and who had recently passed away. The candles flickered and that was enough for us!
Later that night, while lying in our bunk beds, my brother and I began discussing how freaky the whole event had been. It was at that moment the light in our room turned on. We laid there in terrified silence for what seemed like an eternity. "Did you do that?", I whispered. "No, did you?", he replied. I said that I had not and at that moment the light went off. We vowed never to touch a Ouija board again.
Many years later a friend told me of an even more frightening event that happened after she and some friends "messed around" with a Ouija board. I dare not write it here because it is too frightening and most would not believe me.
Recently Toy's R Us started marketing a Glow-in-the-Dark Ouija Board to ages 8-14. This caused an outcry from many parents as it should. You can send an email or sign a petition here. This is not a game it is a tool and it is dangerous. It truly is dabbling in the occult and seeking to contact very real evil spirits and is not something we should expose our children too.
As we can see in today's Gospel, demonic possession is very real and children are not off limits to the Devil. How did this girl become possessed by an "unclean spirit"? We are not told. However, exorcists tell us that most often a person becomes possessed by opening themselves in some way to an unclean spirit. Very rarely is someone possessed without some consent of the will either implicit or explicit. The use of a Ouija board could have the same effect, obsession or possession, even years later.
What can be done? We must protect our children from these occult practices no matter how seemingly innocent and childish. We must also ask those who sell and create such items to cease and to pray for their conversion.
Today the Church gives us yet another answer to these problems. Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. The beautiful, innocent little girl Bernadette has an "other-worldly" experience not through seances and Ouija boards but in prayer most especially the rosary. Like the mother in the Gospel, Mary too seeks Jesus' help in freeing her children from the grip of the evil one. She too it is who crushes the head of Satan. (Rev 12:17, Gen 3:15) Our Lady of Lourdes, Pray for Us!
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