Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Fr. Piero Gheddo

5/24/2013 (2 years ago)

Asia News (www.asianews.it/)

In Guinea, a country that is still pagan, Satan's presence does not surprise anyone. People truly believe that he exists and they see him wherever there is evil, hatred, violence, division, and mafias

Father Gheddo talks about the experience of Fr Dionisio Ferraro, a native of Vicenza (Italy) and a missionary in Guinea Bissau. As the latter worked on a book dealing with faith, he was whipped by the devil one night to the point of drawing blood, causing deep wounds to the body. In Africa, the presence of Satan "is no surprise to anyone"; he is also present in Italy, but very "little is said about him."

Guinea-Bissau soldiers

Guinea-Bissau soldiers

Highlights

By Fr. Piero Gheddo

Asia News (www.asianews.it/)

5/24/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: PIME, P.I.M.E., Missionas, devil, satan, evangleical, power, Holy Spirit, Asia news, missionary, Fr. Piero Gheddo


MILAN, Italy (AsiaNews) - Fr Dionisio Ferraro, a missionary with the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (PIME), was born in Casoni (Vicenza, Italy) in 1944. A priest since 1970, he moved to Guinea-Bissau in 1972 and has lived in the country ever since. He served as PIME regional superior in Guinea from 1981 to 1985 and is currently a parish priest in Bambadinca, a pagan town in the Diocese of Bafatá, the country's second diocese, established in 2001. I interviewed him in Milan on 21 May 2013 and he approved this interview. Although some may not believe in the devil's existence, Pope Francis has often spoken about him. I asked Father Dionisio to tell me about his ordeal. ***** In 2011, I came to Italy, and I was struck by the lack of faith in many people. That year, Benedict XVI had announced the Year of Faith (11 October 2011-24 November 2012). Upon returning to Guinea in March, I set out to write a booklet in kriol (the national language along with the Portuguese) titled 'Lord, make us stronger in faith'. It was needed to prepare adults for baptism, but it was also good for others, until the last chapter on Our Lady, Our Mother in faith: about 50 pages in all. After it was done and ready, I thought of taking it to Bissau for printing, but I could not find a day off. Given the state of the roads, it takes three hours and more to cover 120 km one way (and the same the other way). In Bambadinca, I normally go to bed early. We have no electricity, nor television. Outside, there are mosquitoes. So I go to bed at 21:00 hours. I tend to fall asleep right away and sleep well. At 1 am, I wake up, turn on the lamp and get up. I pray and write until about 3 am. Then, I am sleepy again and go back to sleep again until 5.30 or 6. I don't have to set the alarm clock. At 1 am on 23 March 2011, I got up, I re-read the booklet. I liked it what I read and decided that the next day I would go to Bissau to the printer. I went back to bed, laid down on my left side. When I felt sleep come over me, I turned to the right and fell asleep. In Guinea, rooms are closed and without lights, so we sleep without clothes on or cover because of the heat. As I was falling asleep, I felt something lashing at my left shoulder and arm-on the left side of my body, and leg. Flabbergasted, I screamed from the pain. As someone kept on whipping me in the dark, I tried to protect my head with my hands. Then, it dawned on me that I was in bed inside a room in a brick house, behind a locked door and grated windows. Nobody could have come into the room.The devil came to mind and I shouted: 'Vade retro, Satana, in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit! And, miraculaously, the whipping stopped. I continued to scream in vain since no one else was in the house. There was blood on my left shoulder and knee, and so I prayed to Jesus and Mary. I turned on the lamp and I looked in the mirror: I saw the blood. After washing it out and drying the wound, I put some penicillin and an antibiotic ointment-the treatment eventually lasted a fortnight. I felt a lot of pain, but that did not prevent me from thinking. I checked the door and it was locked from the inside. The security bars on the window were solid and untouched. I looked under the bed, in the wardrobe, in the bathroom: no one. At that point, I shouted to myself and to the Lord: 'It's the devil who does not want me to publish this book.' After that, I knelt and prayed again. When I went back to bed, the Lord sent me back to sleep. When the alarm clock rang, I got up. At that point, I thought I had to show my wounds and blood to the bishop. So I went to Bafatá to see Mgr Pedro Zilli, an Italian-Brazilian member of PIME. He saw my wounds and heard my story. He told me to pray and bless the room before going to bed. After that, I travelled to Bissau and showed my wounds to Fr Davide Sciocco, PIME regional superior for Guinea, who told me to pray. Later, I told Fr Luca Pedretti about it. He is the vicar general of the diocese of Bafatŕ and a diocesan 'fidei donum' priest from Verona. 'Always keep holy water in the room and bless it,' he told me. Next I thought: 'My book is incomplete.' Hence, after the last chapter on Our Lady, Our Mother in faith, I added another one on the devil, citing biblical texts from the Old Testament, Mark 1:13, in which Jesus goes into the desert for 40 days and is tempted by the devil, and Mark 4:15, in which Satan takes away the word of God, and other quotes with brief comments. I added: these are facts from the Bible that may seem far away and no longer relevant to us today. Yet, my own experience confirms them. I also wrote about what happened to me: on the night of 23 March 2011, Satan whipped me because he did not want me to publish this book.

*****
I told Father Dionisio that his story would cause astonishment in Italy; perhaps disbelief even. In answering, he said:

"I understand you because you in Italy do not have direct and personal experience with the devil. But on visiting my homeland for a month or two, I realize how the devil is present in Italian society, in families, but little is said about him. In Guinea, a country that is still pagan, Satan's presence does not surprise anyone. People truly believe that he exists and they see him wherever there is evil, hatred, violence, division, and mafias. They fear him a lot." "To speak about Satan to our people is useful; in fact, since my book came out, many have come up and asked me more about the devil and are increasingly drawn to an evangelical vision of life, i.e. they discover first hand that only Jesus Christ can deliver them from the devil, who is the only true enemy of God and man."


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Europe

Hoarding cash and empty supermarkets: Greeks panic over looming economic downfall Watch

Image of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras remains positive despite the financial turmoil in Greece.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Greeks are starting to empty their supermarkets, hoarding cash and food amidst the growing fear of a possible collapse in the Greek economy. Citizens of Greece continue to panic and doubt if there will be anything positive to look forward to after bailout deal ... continue reading


Top German publication pressures Chancellor Merkel to act after NEW U.S. spying allegations Watch

Image of Chancellor Merkel has made no public comment on the incident, although Washington's ambassador to Berlin was summoned to the Chancellery. Merkel's displeasure was made known to him 'in no uncertain terms.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel was understandably upset after she learned the national Security Agency had her under surveillance for several years. This is the type of action the U.S. reserves for unfriendly nations, and not our strongest ally in NATO. Merkel ... continue reading


HITTING WALL: Nation of Greece prepares for economic meltdown Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The nation of Greece, after years of scolding by the European Union over its fiscal irresponsibility is headed to an inevitable meltdown. Cash reserves are dwindling by the minute, sure to disintegrate the ruling coalition. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


The new 'Iron Curtain': Hungary plans massive border fence to keep migrants out Watch

Image of Border fence between United States and Mexico.

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Critics are not happy with the Hungarian government's plan to construct a 13-foot high border fence to narrow down the influx of illegal migrants coming to their country. The planned border is being compared to the historically terrifying Auschwitz and Iron Curtain ... continue reading


Horrific terrorist attacks in France, Tunisia and Kuwait unleashed simultaneously Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Three different terrorist attacks occurred in three different areas, leaving a bloody line of death across three continents. The recent and horrific attacks reawaken the fear that ISIS' influence knows no boundaries. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The attacks took ... continue reading


Mystery surrounds disappearance of American woman on ancient Catholic pilgrimage in Spain Watch

Image of Denise Thiem mysteriously disappears during her Catholic Pilgrimage in Spain.

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Denise Thiem, an American woman who quit her job to go around the world, disappeared while in a Catholic Pilgrimage in Astorga, Spain and has been missing for more than three months  Thiem's family is continuously searching for answers from the Spanish authorities ... continue reading


Riots and protests prompt the banning of the Uber taxi service in France Watch

Image of The taxi protests in Paris have shined yet another unflattering spotlight on the world's most popular tourist destination. Politicians on both sides of the spectrum condemned the violence.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Denied their livelihood by the cyber-taxi service Uber, which pairs up paying passengers with unlicensed drivers, cab drivers overturned cars and blocked roads in Paris. The Uber service is already illegal in France, and the French government reiterated this ... continue reading


ZOMBIE PARANOIA: Gravesites suggest that fear of reanimated dead stretches back to ancient Greece Watch

Image of The head and feet of one skeleton were covered with a

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Modern man enjoys movies and TV shows involving the recently reanimated dead - "zombies," but in antiquity, the fear of the deceased suddenly coming back to life to wreak havoc with the living was at one time a real one. Skeletons have been unearthed and found ... continue reading


Ukraine's fragile ceasefire nearing collapse as rebels pound government positions Watch

Image of Fighters in Russian military uniforms and equipped with Russian military gear, though lacking insignias, have been spotted in Ukraine since early last year, part of a destabilizing effort to overthrow the Kiev government.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The abundance of evidence that Russia is covertly and overtly assisting Ukrainian rebels in their fight against Kiev continues to grow, and now the commander of U.S. forces in Europe said that there is "clear and irrefutable evidence" that Russia is actively ... continue reading


Panicked Greeks withdraw $1 billion from banks in a single day Watch

Image of Expressing a mood of panic, and a resignation that no further help from Europe is forthcoming, Greeks withdrew over $1.1 billion dollars from their bank accounts last week.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Expressing a mood of panic, and a resignation that no further help from Europe is forthcoming, Greeks withdrew over $1.1 billion dollars from their bank accounts last week. This pushes the beleaguered European nation closer towards a default. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Genesis 32:23-33
23 That same night he got up and, taking his two ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 17:1, 2-3, 6-7, 8, 15
1 [Prayer Of David] Listen, Yahweh, to an upright ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 9:32-38
32 They had only just left when suddenly a man was ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 7th, 2015 Image

Bl. Ralph Milner
July 7: English martyr. He was born at Stocksteads, Hampshire, and was a ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter