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[VIDEO] Did Pope Francis perform an exorcism? Vatican says 'No'

May 21, 2013 at 3:07 PM  |  Updated May 21, 2013 at 4:25 PM   |   Comments

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May 21 (UPI) -- Two days after Italian media claimed Pope Francis had been caught on video performing an exorcism, the Vatican has come forward to deny the claims.

The rumors came about Sunday after Francis was seen putting both his hands on the head of a young man in a wheelchair. The Pope's actions prompted many to think he was performing an exorcism. However, Vatican Spokesman Federico Lombardi said in a statesmen that wasn't the case, NCR reported.

"The Holy Father had no intention of performing an exorcism, but -- as he often does with the sick and suffering people presented to him -- he simply intended to pray for the suffering person before him," Lombardi said.

According to the Telegraph, Italy's TV2000, a Catholic television channel owned by the Italian Bishops Conference, claimed the act took place in St Peter's Square after Mass on Sunday.

"Exorcists who have seen the footage have no doubt -- this was a prayer for liberation from Evil, an actual exorcism," said TV2000.

[VIDEO CREDIT: TV2000 via Telegraph]

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