Thanks, ladies. Check me at the Bada Bing!
It’s no secret that Pope Francis is thoroughly beloved around the world. He has been considered the “Patron Saint of PR.” He thinks the “Internet is a gift from God.” He has even helped the publishing industry by getting his own weekly rag. Also, he can even act like a diva and only follow himself on Twitter (really).
The man is almost immune to #PRFail, so he is able to roll up his sacrosanct sleeves and flex some of that righteous papal muscle when he needs to do so. And boy, did he ever.
From the Holy See: Hey, bad guys. What are youse looking at? Youse guys thinking about Heaven? Fuhgeddaboudit!
Okay, so the New Jersey thing may be incorrect. Quite possibly, it was the entire Tri-State area, specifically in its sanitation departments. Regardless, the Pope took the biggest chance of his Papacy — he gave the rosy red slippers to the behind of the Mafia.
Not just a couple of buttons or consigliere chaps. We are talking to the entire underground network. Straight to hell, or at least, out of the church. What’s more gutsy about the Pontiff’s move was it’s not like the Mafia go to a touchy-feely, community, non-denominational church. These are Catholic, sign-of-the-Cross, mama’s boys. And they got the boot.
Based on a story from CNN, Pope Francis visited Calabria to comfort the imprisoned father of Nicola Campolongo. The man’s son, along with one of his grandfathers and the grandfather’s girlfriend, was shot, left in a car, and torched. The reason: An attack blamed on drug turf wars in the nearby town of Cassano all’Jonio.
Upon hearing about it, Pope Francis said he would visit the town and the family. He did. And then he planned to do something with his scepter:
“Those who in their life have gone along the evil ways, as in the case of the mafia, they are not with God, they are excommunicated.”
No. Joke. He just said that.
Just in case you aren’t fluent in Soprano-ese, Calabria is the power base of the ‘ndrangheta, a global drug trafficking syndicate that enriches itself by extorting businesses and infiltrating public works contracts in underdeveloped Calabria.
So, during his homily at an outdoor Mass, Francis denounced the ‘ndrangheta for what he called its “adoration of evil and contempt for the common good. ”
“Those who go down the evil path, as the Mafiosi do, are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated,” he warned.
Just like any good client, Pope Francis repeated his talking point for clarity and impact. Good thing he is surrounded by guards, prayers, and a few angels, huh? You go, Pope.