We’re all familiar with the iconic movie The Exorcist.
In the film a 12-year-old girl writhes around on a bed, foams at the mouth, projectile vomits and speaks in a demonic voice while a priest tries to perform an exorcism on her.
Although this scenario might seem a bit far-fetched, exorcisms like this are taking place on a daily basis around the world, with some of them even occurring in Australia.
Each year more than 500,000 people worldwide seek out the services of an exorcist, according to Matt Baglio’s book The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist.
And that number is constantly on the rise.
The latest exorcism to make news headlines around the world was the mass exorcism of a group of schoolgirls in Argentina.
According to The Sun, the school in Santiago de Salavina called in a team of exorcists after 11 school girls were struck down with a mysterious illness. The girls complained of feeling unwell, faint, and of being left with blindness from the illness.
The exorcists arrived, held down the girls, and performed a ritual as they writhed and squirmed around on the floor like snakes.
Footage of one of the exorcisms shows a priest placing his hand on the forehead of one of the young girls while holding some rosary beads.
She falls to the ground and writhes around while her friend holds her down. She then becomes still for a few moments before violently throwing her limbs around again.
Julio Alis, the priest who performed the exorcism, told El Liberal that he sees evil spirits practically every day.
"I am a Catholic, and this gift that God has given me I use to help people," he said.