Last night I delivered my presentation on Mafia and the Problem of Evil to about thirty members of the evening fellowship at St Peter's in Harrogate.
At TFN we are committed to giving Christians an opportunity to think through challenging and difficult topics. Almost every day we hear about atrocities perpetrated by IS jihadists etc. How do we make sense of these terrifying stories? In my presentation I try to help sixth formers (RB in schools) to understand five ways of looking at evil and atrocity.
1) Evil is caused by bad karma (Hinduism)
Giovanni Brusca is known as 'the Pig' or 'il Porco' for his slovenly appearance and huge craving for Italian posh nosh – Lasagne, Barolo and olive oil. He once admitted to killing at least a hundred people and to top it all, he tortured and murdered an 11-year-old boy. He also detonated the huge bomb that killed anti-mafia magistrate Giovanni Falcone, his wife and three police officers in 1992. Mr Piggy is now in prison. What would you say to 'il Porco'?
I was very pleased with how the RealityBites sixth form conference went down yesterday at Emmanuel College in Gateshead. There were about 150 students from two schools present and for the first time I presented two RealityBites talks. I spoke about Celebrity Culture, Human Trafficking and Responsible Citizenship before lunch and then I delivered the Mafia, British Values and Evil talk after lunch.
I'm exploring role models in my blog. Here is an Italian woman who has become a bit of a celebrity for her Christian response to the Mafia.
In May 1992 Mafia thug Giovanni Brusca set off a huge bomb in the small Sicilian village of Capaci that killed antimafia investigating magistrate Giovanni Falcone, several police officers and his wife.
At the state funeral of Falcone and the other murdered government officials, Rosario Schifani, the widow of one of the dead police officers said the following:
Some Mafia names are very entertaining! What is your favourite?
- Jimmy 'The Weasel' Fratianno
- Anthony 'Fat Tony' Salerno
- Vincent 'The Chin' Gigante
- Leo 'Lips' Moceri
- Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano
- Salvatore 'Fat Sally' Scala
- Vincenzo 'The Egg' Cotroni
- Johnny 'Big Lips' Pescatori
- Jimmy 'The Chop' Marini
- Ants 'Ice Man' Zamboni
- Joey 'Kneecap' Santorielli
- Roberto 'Wrinkle Free' Capelli
In May 1992 mafiosi Giovanni Brusca set off a huge bomb in the small Sicilian village of Capaci that killed antimafia investigating magistrate Giovanni Falcone, several police officers and his wife.
At the state funeral of Falcone and the other murdered government officials, Rosario Schifani, the widow of one of the dead police officers said the following in a very public way:
In 2007 when mafia boss Salvatore Lo Piccolo was arrested they found the Mafia's equivalent of the ten commandments in his house! Here they are.