Father Andrea Maggi burns photo of Benedict XVI in the middle of Sunday mass in the northern Italy village of Castel Vittorio in Liguria, saying the former pope was “like the Captain Calamity of the Concordia who had abandoned his ship.” In other words, Father Andrea Maggi accused him of deserting the church.
Father Maggi explained his actions by saying: ‘a shepherd shouldn’t abandon his flock.’ Castel Vittorio mayor, Gianstefano Orengo, who was summoned to tackle the errant priest said: ‘It was a shocking gesture. ‘I understand that Don Andrea is going through a delicate period from a psychological point of view.’
The local bishop said he was ‘mortified’ by the ‘reprehensible and grave disturbance of ecclesial communion.He said: ‘I am mortified by the actions of Father Andrea, who in other respects has proved a priest who is generous and sensitive in his pastoral conduct. ‘The gesture has caused confusion among the parishioners- many left the church.’ But Don Maggi remained defiant saying he ‘had done the right thing’. He told La Repubblica: ‘I had said to myself the day that he goes I will burn this.’
While other clergy claim to found the Pope’s retirement courageous, Don Maggi insisted: ‘I thought to myself, “Are you the Pope or are you Captain Schettino of the Concordia who abandoned his ship?”‘If eight years was enough of being Pope, he didn’t need to accept it. He created 90 cardinals, he wasn’t some novice or ingenue, who didn’t know what they were getting into.’ Source
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