The manager of the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas asked a Catholic priest to bless the room used by a man to kill 58 people at a country music concert on October 1st.
ChurchPOP is reporting on the blessing that occurred a few weeks ago when Father Clete Kiley and a group of people arrived at the hotel from Chicago. They came to comfort the staff who were left traumatized after a lone gunman named Stephen Paddock used a room on the 32nd floor of the building to kill dozens of people and wound over 500 others while they were enjoying a concert on the Las Vegas strip.
Father Kiley and his group had just finished praying with hundreds of members of the Mandalay staff when the hotel manager approached him. She told him that the room used by Paddock had just been released back to the hotel by the FBI and she wanted him to bless the space.
Father agreed, and said that as he reached the hallway of the 32nd floor, he encountered a temporary door blocking entrance to the hall. As he opened the door, he said he immediately became aware of a dark spiritual presence.
“I felt like I was being pushed back, like ‘don’t come in here,’” he told Newsweek. But he pushed on anyway, even though on in the inside he was saying to the evil presence, “Oh no, you have to go.’”
All around him he saw walls riddled with bullet holes and bits of plaster scattered across the floor.
When he reached the room, he opened the door and stepped inside.
“When I stepped in the room, I really felt a real profound silence,” he said. “I immediately noticed the broken windows covered from outside. It was very powerful to see the physical damage.”
He sensed an evil presence in the room and used a palm branch to disperse Holy Water while praying to the Holy Spirit.
As soon as he did this, he felt a sense of comfort and relief.
Later, when he returned downstairs, the hotel staff looked very relieved that a priest had blessed the room.
“You could see people go, ‘Thank God, that’s good,’” he said. “I really saw the whole thing as part of a healing process. A small part of a healing process.”
To date, no motive for the killing has been determined.
Like the rest of the world, Father Kiley is struggling to comprehend the senseless killing that took place there a month ago.
“This is what we call the mystery of evil,” he said. “You cannot use reason to put the pieces of this together.”
Authorities have yet to determine a motive for the crime.
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