What are your thoughts about this?
Fr. Reehil told the Tennessean that he consulted multiple exorcists throughout the United States and Rome before making his final decision. The exorcists “recommended removing the books.”
“These books present magic as both good and evil, which is not true, but in fact a clever deception,” Fr. Reehil said.
“The curses and spells used in the books are actual curses and spells; which when read by a human being, risk conjuring evil spirits into the presence of the person reading the text.”
While Harry Potter books have been a controversial subject in the past, the Church does not hold an official position on the issue.
Diocese of Nashville Superintendent of Schools Rebecca Hammel said she believes other Catholic schools in the diocese still have the books in their libraries.
Hammel added that Fr. Reehil “has the final say” regarding this matter.
“Each pastor has canonical authority to make such decisions for his parish school,” Hammel told the Tennessean. “He’s well within his authority to act in that manner.”
However, not all Catholics agree that Harry Potter is harmful.
Lay Dominican and young adult fantasy novelist Rosamund Hodge told Catholic News Agency that she believes “concerns about the ‘magic’ in Harry Potter are overblown.” She does not believe there are any risks of conjuring evil spirits with the book’s spells.
“While [Author J.K.] Rowling does occasionally draw from actual occult folklore for some of her world-building…the spells her characters use are usually just fake Latin describing what they’re supposed to do,” Hodge said.
“The magic in these books is about as ‘real’ as Cinderella’s fairy godmother singing ‘bibbidi- bobbidi-boo.'”
Regardless of one’s decision concerning Harry Potter, priest and exorcist Msgr. Charles Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington told CNA that Catholics should still “guard against any sort of dabbling with the occult or witchcraft.”
“Once you’re into actual witchcraft, you are in the dark side, since there’s nothing of God in this. It’s a violation of the First Commandment.”