Pope: Mafiosi Excommunicated
First time a pope has used word to address organized crime
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Jun 21, 2014 4:15 PM CDT
A faithful hands out some mate' tea, the typical Argentine tealike drink, to Pope Francis as he leaves after visiting the inmates of the prison of Castrovillari, southern Italy, Saturday, June 21, 2014....   (AP Photo/Adriana Sapone)

(Newser) – Pope Francis issued a powerful condemnation of the Mafia today, saying the mafiosi and others who follow an evil path "are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated." Never before has a pope specifically referred to "excommunication" of the mafiosi, Reuters notes. The pope was speaking in southern Calabria in Italy, where crime is rampant and the organized crime group 'Ndrangheta is based. That group, he said, showed an "adoration of evil and contempt of the common good."

The "excommunication" comment didn't represent a formal church action, says a Vatican spokesman; instead, it was intended to suggest that the mafiosi's actions had resulted in self-excommunication. The pope wanted to "isolate mafiosi within their own communities." Francis also said the church would fight organized crime and visited with the father of a 3-year-old boy allegedly killed by organized criminals. When Pope John Paul II condemned the Mafia in 1993, members bombed several churches in Rome, Reuters notes. Some have worried that the Mafia could target the pope, but he doesn't seem too worried, Religion News Service notes. He recently told a Spanish newspaper that while "it’s true that anything could happen … let’s face it, at my age, I don’t have much to lose."

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Showing 3 of 85 comments
charlie hawaii
Jun 24, 2014 2:44 AM CDT
Let help the pope let find a legal way to arrest mafia or sabotage their evil business world wide don't brek the law stopping them must be over dozen way to jam them up by using our head ,must have connection to get drug in air, car, boat etc tax their legal front business this 1 fight we should all help to stop mafia & terrorist do it correct we don't want the good people arrested only the mafia
MattB
Jun 23, 2014 6:02 AM CDT
The "excommunication" comment didn't represent a formal church action, says a Vatican spokesman; instead, it was intended to suggest that the mafiosi's actions had resulted in self-excommunication. I was under the impression that the Pope "DID NOT NEED PERMISSION" what he says is law in the Church? No, kinda like the stance on pedophilia in the Catholic church, lest publicly denounce it, but not really do squat about it because WE DO NOT CAR...
Nofun
Jun 23, 2014 4:23 AM CDT
One dishonest con man berating another criminal organization. Funny.