Pope pays tribute in Sicily to priest slain by Mafia
PALERMO, Sicily — Pope Francis appealed to Mafiosi to renounce their quests for power and money as he visited Sicily on Saturday to honor a priest slain by mob henchmen for trying to protect youths from the clutches of organized crime.
The daylong trip to the Mediterranean island marked the 25th anniversary of the fatal shooting of the Rev. Giuseppe “Pino” Puglisi in Palermo. Puglisi was declared a martyr by the Vatican and beatified in 2013.
Francis paid tribute to the priest, who worked to keep unemployed youths in a poor neighborhood of Palermo from turning to local Mafia bosses for jobs like pushing drugs. The papal pilgrimage came in counterpoint to the latest revelations about priests and bishops who sexually abused children or connived to protect the abusers in various nations.
Participants march during the German-American Steuben Parade on Saturday in New York. The parade, founded in 1957, is named after Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, a Prussia-born general who served with Gen. George Washington in the Revolutionary War.