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A spirited crowd greets Lorraine Warren

November 22, 2013

Kelsi Ford/ The Courier - Tony Spera and Lorraine Warren, center, presented their experiences as ghostbusters to a full Dahl Chapel on Wednesday evening.

After the welcome reception of ghost-hunter Chris Fleming, the executive board of the Associated Students for Activity Programming (A.S.A.P.) wouldn’t dare pass up on the opportunity for famed psychic and clairvoyant Lorraine Warren to visit the campus. Brinton Vincent, a member of the A.S.A.P executive board, mentioned Warren’s manager contacted Jim Fry, Monmouth’s Assistant Director of Campus Events, and asked if A.S.A.P. would be interested in Warren’s visiting Monmouth. “Of course, we all automatically said ‘Yes,’” said Vincent in response to Fry’s query about hosting Warren.

A.S.A.P.’s choice to host Warren did not go unnoticed by the campus. Shortly before Warren and her son-in-law, Tony Spera, came on stage, Vincent had to ask the crowd to squeeze together so every seat could be filled in Dahl Chapel. Viewing the outcome, Vincent said having Warren turned out to “be one of A.S.A.P.’s most successful events.”

Of course, when inviting a speaker as popular as Lorraine Warren, one could have little downfall. Warren and her now deceased husband, Ed, are North America’s most documented experts on all things paranormal. Numerous books, movies and television shows have chronicled their life and experiences as paranormal investigators and helpers. The Warrens are best known for their work with the Long-Island Amityville Horror case. The case, which Warren recalled during her presentation, drew much criticism when it was first published. It has since been made into several cinematic adaptations, the most recent being Andrew Douglas’s 2005 “Amityville Horror” staring Ryan Reynolds. Also of note is last summer’s blockbuster hit by director James Wan, “The Conjuring,” in which Warren was credited as a consultant and even appeared in a cameo role. The Warrens also penned their own stories including “Werewolf: A True Story of Demonic Possession” and “Ghost Hunters: True Stories From the World’s Most Famous Demonologists.”

With her companion ghost hunter and husband now deceased, the 86-year old Mrs. Warren travels the college circuit with Spera. Acting as sidekick and interval speaker for the aging Mrs. Warren, Spera is also a paranormal activity investigator and the curator of the famed Warren Occult Museum that houses a variety of diabolical objects.

Beyond their paranormal professional life, though, Spera and Mrs. Warren are a pair of down-to-earth relatives. The two, obviously comfortable with each other, effortlessly teased and picked on one other, much to the enjoyment of the crowd. Spera also mentioned Patrick Wilson’s portrayal of Ed Warren in “The Conjuring” was accurate to Mr. Warren while on the job, but off the job, Mr. Warren was a “real practical joker.”

After a heartfelt introduction by Spera, Mrs. Warren began her life story. Growing up a psychic with the ability to read “auras” or faint glows around people, Mrs. Warren actively sought the answer to the question “who am I?” She claims it wasn’t until a meeting with another psychic that she was able to come to terms with her ability. After that, she sought to help others with her gift. As a devout Roman-Catholic who has a priest in her home, Warren believes her clairvoyance is a gift from God.

The program then moved into a series of slides direct from Warren’s files, including some never-publically released photos of inside the Amityville House.

At times preachy, but all times exciting, A.S.A.P. captured the spirit of Monmouth College by hosting Mrs. Warren.

Chase Mowery
Copy Editor

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