Vatican wants to revive church’s role in fighting the Mafia

VATICAN CITY — Vatican officials traveled this week to the island of Sicily, the heartland of the Mafia, to promote … Continued

VATICAN CITY — Vatican officials traveled this week to the island of Sicily, the heartland of the Mafia, to promote the church’s role in fighting organized crime.

The Vatican says it wants to show that the best way to respond to the Mafia is through the promotion of a “culture of dialogue and legality.”

The “Courtyard of the Gentiles,” a Vatican-sponsored initiative aimed at bridging the gap between Christian and secular culture, organized the two-day event in Palermo, Sicily’s main town.

The agenda included a speech by Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, and a roundtable with priests, prosecutors and Mafia experts.

The conference ended Friday night (March 30) with an interfaith festival on the steps of Palermo’s cathedral, organized by the grassroots anti-Mafia movement “Addio Pizzo.”

The Catholic Church in Italy has often been accused of being too timid towards the Mafia.

Event organizer Bishop Antonino Raspanti admitted that the church “has not condemned strongly enough,” the mafia in the past. But “things have changed,” he said, and there is no doubt that the “Mafia is anti-human and anti-religious.”

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  • SODDI

    Why not? The Vatican Bank has been laundering money for various crime cartels for decades now. They know where the money IS.

  • Rongoklunk

    It wouldn’t be a fair fight, because the Church has God on their side. All the Pope has to do is call up God and ask him to smite the badguys and Bam! They’re smited! I’m sure he could do that, otherwise why be a Pope?

  • tony55398

    If the Church can withhold Communion from certain members of the gay community, certainly they should do so for the known members of the Mafia, but of course Judas most certainly received it, so, all should be welcome, evern those who are enemies of the Church, Love your enemies.