"Those who in their lives follow this path of evil, as mafiosi do, are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated."--Pope Francis, Calabria, First Day of Summer, 21 June, 2014
I will print the Holy Father's homily from an official text. So far though it is powerful and His Holiness calls these Italians to forgo the road of violence and of the mafia. He states boldly that the mafia are excommunicated! We must not worship money or violence but God alone.
The Vatican's official text of the homily:
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis concluded his
one-day trip to the southern Italian region of Calabria with strong
words against the Calabrian mafia, saying that it is "adoration of evil
and contempt for the common good". He said those who have chosen the
"evil road" as being "excommunicated"; the crowd responded with
applause. He made these statements during his homily for the high mass
for the feast of Corpus Domini in Sibari. Thousands attended the
open-air mass under the hot sun.
Read the Vatican Radio translation of the Pope’s homily below:
On the feast of Corpus Domini, we celebrate Jesus “living bread that
came down from heaven” (Jn 6,51), food for our hunger for eternal life,
strength for our journey. I thank the Lord, who today allows me to
celebrate Corpus Domini with you, brothers and sisters of this Church,
which is in Cassano allo Jonio. Today’s feast is that on which the
Church praises the Lord for the gift of the Eucharist. While on Holy
Thursday, we recall its institution at the Last Supper, today
thanksgiving and adoration predominate. And, in fact, it is tradition on
this day to have the procession with the Blessed Sacrament. To adore
Jesus Eucharist and to walk with him. These are the two inseparable
aspects of today’s feast, two aspects that mark the entire life of the
Christian people: a people that adores God and walks with him.
Before all else, we are a people who adores God. We adore God, who is
love, who in Jesus Christ gave himself for us, offered himself on the
cross to expiate our sins and by the power of this love he rose from
death and lives in his Church. We do have no other God than this!
When adoration of the Lord is substituted by adoration of money, the
road to sin opens to personal interest ... When one does not adore the
Lord, one becomes an adorer of evil, like those who live by dishonesty
and violence. Your land, which so beautiful, knows the signs of the
consequences of this sin. The ‘ndrangheta (Calabrian mafia) is
this: adoration of evil and contempt of the common good. This evil must
be fought, must be expelled. It must be told no. The Church, which is so
committed to educating consciences, must always expend itself even more
so that good can prevail. Our children ask this of us. Our young people
ask this of us, they, who need hope. To be able to respond to this
demands, faith can help us. Those who in their lives have taken this
evil road, this road of evil, such as the mobsters, they are not in
communion with God, they are excommunicated.
Today, we confess this with our gaze
turned to Corpus Domini, to the Sacrament of the altar. And, for this
faith, we renounce Satan and all of his temptations; we renounce the
idols of money, vanity, pride and power. We, Christians, do not want to
adore anything or anyone in this world except Jesus Christ, who is
present in the Holy Eucharist. Perhaps we do not always realize what
this means in all its depth, the
consequences our profession of faith has or should have. Today we ask
the Lord to enlighten us and to convert us, so that we truly adore only
him and we renounce evil in all its forms.
But our faith in the real presence of Jesus Christ, true God and true
man, in the consecrated bread and wine, is authentic if we commit to
follow him and to walk with him, seeking to put into practice his
commandment which he gave to the disciples at the Last Supper: “Just as I
have loved you, you also should love one another” (Jn 13,34). A people
who adores God in the Eucharist is a people who walks in charity.
Today, as bishop of Rome, I am here to confirm you not only in faith
but also in charity, to accompany you and to encourage you in your
journey with Jesus Charity. I want to express my support to the bishop,
the priests and the deacons of this Church, and also of the Eparchy of
Lungro, rich in its Greek-Byzantine tradition. But I extend it to all
the pastors and faithful of the Church in Calabria, courageously
committed to evangelization and to promoting lifestyles and initiatives
which put at the centre the needs of the poor and of the. And I also
extend it to the civil authorities who seek to live political and
administrative commitment for what it is—a service to the common good.
I encourage all to witness practical solidarity with your brothers,
especially those who most need justice, hope and tenderness. Thank God,
there are many signs of hope in your families, parishes, associations
and ecclesial movements. The Lord Jesus does not cease to inspire acts
of charity in his people who journey! The Policoro Project is a concrete
sign of hope for young people who want to get in the game and create
work possibilities for themselves and for others. You, dear young
people, do not let yourselves to be robbed of hope! Adoring Jesus in
your hears and remaining united to him you will know how to oppose evil,
injustice, violence with the force of good, truth and beauty.
Dear brothers and sisters, the Eucharist has gathered us together.
The Body of the Lord makes of us one, one family, the people of God
united around Jesus, Bread of Life. That which I said to the young
people, I say to all of you: if you will adore Christ, follow him and
walk with him, your diocesan Church and your parishes will grow in faith
and charity, in the joy of evangelizing. You will be a Church in which
fathers, mothers, priests, religious, catechists, children, the elderly
and the young walk alongside each other, support each other, help each
other, love each other like brothers, especially in moments of
Mary, Eucharistic Woman, whom you venerate in many sanctuaries,
especially at the one in Castrovillari, precedes you in this pilgrimage
of faith. May she always help you to stay united so that, even by means
of your witness, the Lord may continue to give life to the world.