Finding True Freedom and Healing Through Liber Christo

Liber Christo helps people realize how precious they really are to God, and what it means to re-discover their identity in him.

St. Michael the Archangel
St. Michael the Archangel (photo: Valentina Photos / Shutterstock)

One of the most meaningful statements St. Teresa of Calcutta ever made was when she was crossing an international border. When asked if she was carrying any weapons, she firmly responded, “Yes, I am — my prayer books.”

When I lived with her sisters for several years as a volunteer shelter housemother, I found her words to ring true, time and time again. Although Mother Teresa picked up 6,000 dying people off of the streets of Calcutta and her sisters continue to be some of the most active, charitable religious in the entire world, they know the critical importance of prayer. No matter where they are or how tremendously much they have to accomplish each day, they cling to their rosaries and keep the names of Jesus and Mary in their hearts and on their lips.

And as sweet and serene as they are, they know they are at battle, and that the battle belongs to the Lord. By God’s grace, they realize that prayer is their ammunition amid the ruthless spiritual warfare of daily life, and they aren’t afraid to use it. Heartfelt prayer is what enables the soul to come alive, radiate the goodness of Our Lady, and defeat the Evil One. As Christians, prayer is our native air, our lifeline, and our anchor of hope.

As Mother Teresa once said, “Souls without prayer are like people whose limbs are paralyzed; they possess but can’t control them,” and, “Prayer enlarges the heart until it is capable of containing God’s gift of himself.”

I get it — most of us aren’t religious sisters and we don’t have time to pray most of the day. Yet, we are members of the Church Militant, which means we have been enlisted in the most magnificent, monumental war of all time — the war to ultimately end all wars, the only war that fully fleshes out the reality of the Four Last Things. According to Servant of God Father John Hardon’s Modern Catholic Dictionary, the Church Militant is the “Church on earth, still struggling with sin and temptation, and therefore engaged in warfare (Latin: militia) with the world, the flesh, and the devil.” 

Would anyone in his right mind engage in such a brutal war unarmed or untrained? Absolutely not — especially if he wants to come out of it alive. As the Sacred Scriptures encourage us in Ephesians (6:10-12):

Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens.

This is where powerful tools like The Liber Christo Method: A Field Manual for Spiritual Combat by Dan Schneider come in. Liber Christo is a Catholic movement that helps Catholics to “put on the armor of God.” It operates in conjunction with exorcist Father Chad Ripperger, founder of the Doloran Fathers, to provide tools and resources for priests and laity working in the apostolate of healing, deliverance and exorcism. The Field Manual, which was published by Tan Books, is essentially its catechetical handbook, but is written as a resource for a general audience as well.

Liber Christo means the free man in Christ, or freedom in and through Christ,” says Schneider, a founding member who has worked for many years in the apostolate. “This manual is part of the four-phase protocol developed by Father Ripperger and his long-time assistant Kyle Clement, and the fruit of many years of case management. It shows the reader how they can use the ancient spiritual weapons that are readily available to them as Roman Catholics.” 

Schneider is an Adjunct Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville, a Benedictine Oblate, and a member of the St. John Henry Newman Research Centre for Theology at the Maryvale Institute in Birmingham, England. For nearly 20 years, he has been wholeheartedly involved with teaching and evangelization. He is also a former amateur boxer, U.S. Army helicopter pilot and Gulf War veteran. 

The Liber Christo Method: A Field Manual for Spiritual Combat features practical steps to conquer the enemy and help one obtain lasting spiritual freedom and healing. It offers spiritual “guerrilla warfare” tactics based on real experience in modern spiritual combat in a simple 12-lesson format. The manual encourages one to practice spiritual asceticism and self-discipline, develop a solid traditional Catholic prayer routine based on mental prayer, Scripture reading in the form of Lectio Divina, and frequent reception of the sacraments. 

“We fight an ancient enemy, and therefore the ancient weapons are best,” Schneider says. “We also emphasize the importance of purifying one’s memory in order to improve their prayer life, such as by withdrawing from overuse of the internet and listening to Gregorian chant.” 

Further, the manual has a section uniquely designed to help those who bear particular psychological wounds. Those who are suffering in this way are encouraged to integrate their psychological traumas with a redemptive view of suffering and the use of good mental health practices that align with the teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas. 

“The manual applies Thomistic psychology in a practical way that people can understand,” Schneider says. “It helps you to identify and remove obstacles to grace in your life, as well as gain custody of the imagination and interiority, which is essential for spiritual combat. This takes time and discipline, and those doing the protocol need to be willing to work.”

Although the Liber Christo method and its new field manual may seem like a new approach, both have proved to be thoroughly and authentically Catholic.

“We are not doing anything ‘new,’” Schneider explains. “We are just working to bring back the Church’s traditional norms for spiritual warfare and put them in the hands of priests and the average Catholic.” 

In working with cases over the years, Schneider has gleaned some amazing insights, many of which helped him put together this manual. 

“As Father Ripperger writes in the Introduction to the book, of those who come to the Church for deliverance, statistically only a very small fraction are actually possessed. Most people,” he explains, “can be freed from the demonic influence simply by practicing the Catholic Faith well.”

Schneider recalls how the exorcist Father Gabriel Amorth famously said that “one good confession is worth a hundred exorcisms” and that “confession is stronger than exorcism.” According to Schneider, “Father Amorth also warned that there is a ‘strong temptation for charismatics, sensitives and exorcists ... of finding the quickest way to heal, by going outside the common sacred means to obtain grace’ and can even ‘unwittingly fall into the trap of superstition.’ This book unpacks those ordinary channels of grace by returning spiritual warfare to the solid ground of tradition.”

Over and over again, he has found how essential Marian devotion is in deliverance ministry.

He tells the story of a bishop who recounted his training as a young priest with a famous Roman exorcist years ago. During an exorcism, the demon told the priests, ‘I would absolutely destroy you if it were not for the Lady in Blue standing behind you.’” The “Lady in Blue” is part of God’s plan of defeating the devil. 

According to one devotee named Maggie, deciding to use the Liber Christo method and its manual was one of the best choices she has ever made.

“At first, I didn’t know what to think of it all because people had varying opinions about it,” she says. “But I did my own research and prayed about it, and I am so grateful I did. Father Ripperger and his team are very solid — they know their stuff.”

It has been a profoundly life-changing experience for Maggie.

“I have had a very traumatic life, mainly due to suffering from numerous abusive relationships, extraordinarily difficult trials, and depression. I take my faith very seriously, so I didn’t understand why I couldn’t get free from the things that were oppressing me. I tried so many different things for so many years, and none of them really seemed to help. I was at my wit’s end, and that is when a priest encouraged me to listen to Father Ripperger’s talks on healing and pray the Liber Christo prayers. Using Liber Christo has brought me so much joy, healing and freedom from my woundedness.”

Most importantly, Liber Christo helps people realize how precious they really are to God, and what it means to re-discover their identity in him.

“I have found a renewed sense of peace and have reconciled deeply with God my Heavenly Father,” Maggie says. “I never imagined I could come this far. I now see that the Sacred Heart of Jesus was bleeding with love for me as I endured all of those terrible things. I thought I would be trapped in my fears, hurt and angst forever. I don’t know what would have happened to me if I hadn’t begun using this method. I pray that everyone who is wounded can experience the healing power of Christ like I have.”


The Healing Heart of Jesus

The Most Sacred Heart of Jesus our solace, our hope, and the truest of all loves;
it emanates the redemptive balm of the Beloved One, who heals us from above.

Christ’s Heart is a messianic mystery which we grasp only by His gratuitous grace;
it draws us to contemplate the clemency radiating from His Holy Face.

It belongs to the Master of the Universe who rules the highest heavens,
and yet it once beat mildly with the subastral blood of men.

The King of the Ages offers Himself out of sovereign liberty,
so that His beloved sons and daughters may be joyful, pure, and free.

His Divine Heart of Love is so regal yet so meek,
its mystical humility attracts all who search and seek.

It burns with agony over these brutal days of the Church’s Passion;
it longs to be our luminous sanctuary, our mystical refuge, and our bastion.

Jesus surrenders His Heart for us during each Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,
His mercy is so ravishing, so radiant, so beautiful — we cannot just let it pass.

If we cling to this great Heart from dawn until the setting of the sun,
by the sway of its love, the wild battles of our days will be won.

If we confide in its magnanimity, we will be enlightened, we will be free;
the Victim’s wounds have paid our ransom, so that we may see.

The charity of His Heart can heal us from so much angst and pain;
its kindness is a remedy poured forth from the Lamb who was slain.

If we raise Christ’s Heart high to reign above all the land,
He will keep us safe in the palm of His Father’s mighty hand.

If we give ourselves entirely to the Desire of the Everlasting Hills,
our spirits will find rest, and all within us will, at last, be still.