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 Pope excommunicates mafia for ‘adoration of evil’

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Join date : 2011-08-09

PostSubject: Pope excommunicates mafia for ‘adoration of evil’    Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:14 am

Pope excommunicates mafia for ‘adoration of evil’
Andrew Griffin,The Independent | Jun 23, 2014, 04.17 AM IST

The mafia is an example of the “adoration of evil and contempt of the common good,” the Pope said.

The pope excommunicated the mafia on Saturday, blasting a group that is thought to be the most powerful organized crime group in the world. It is the most severe condemnation of the mafia by a pope for two decades, after criticism over twenty years ago triggered revenge attacks in Italy.

The mafia is an example of the "adoration of evil and contempt of the common good," he said.

In unplanned remarks about the 'Ndragheta crime group to thousands of people at mass in southern Italy, Pope Francis said, "Those who in their lives follow this path of evil, as mafiosi do, are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated."

The pope said that the church would use its full force to combat organized crime. "Our children are asking for it, our young people are asking for it," he said.

The comments came after the pope met the family of a three-year-old child murdered earlier this year. Authorities believe that the 'Ndrangheta are behind the killing, in which two other people died. A spokesman said that the words did not constitute the kind of formal decree that is required for official excommunication. But the statement is still expected to have a deep affect on members of the mafia, because many see themselves as religious and attend ceremonies.

The comments — the first time that a pope has used the word excommunicated in relation to the crime group — are thought to be the church's strongest attack on the mafia since 1993. Then, Pope John Paul blasted the Sicilian mafia when he visited the area after a run of murders.

A number of churches were bombed after Pope John Paul's comments, in part because the church had broken an unwritten hands-off rule towards crime, experts said at the time.

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