Pope urges Mafia-ruled town to break code of silence and help police

DCNFJoshua Gill, DCNF

Pope Francis urged the citizens of a Roman suburb ruled by the Mafia to forsake the criminal code of silence called Omerta and help police.

(Image: Flickr)

Francis gave the exhortation during a Sunday evening mass that he led for the seaside town of Ostia, according to The Associated Press. He urged citizens to stand on the side of law and to forsake the traditional Italian code of Omerta by speaking with police and denouncing crime lords and others associated with organized crime. He exhorted them to “knock down” the barriers of social codes like Omerta.

Francis urged citizens to embrace “justice, decorum and lawfulness,” and decried arrogance and abuses of power.

The law of Omerta originated with the Sicilian mafia, who rose to power during the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It is defined as “the obligation never, under any circumstances, to apply for justice to the legal authorities and never to assist in any way in the detection of crimes committed against oneself or others.” The word itself is derived from umiltà, which means humility and implies submission.

The Italian government assumed direct control of the municipality of Ostia in 2015 to wrest it from the control of local Mafia clans who had infiltrated the local government. Mafia members have threatened journalists who cover their activities in the area. Authorities also claim that the mafia in Ostia are responsible for drug trafficking, loan-sharking, murders, and extortion.

In the face of all this, Francis urged the citizens of Ostia to reject “fear and oppression.”

Follow Joshua on Twitter

Send tips to joshua@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.


Please help us! If you are fed up with letting radical big tech execs, phony fact-checkers, tyrannical liberals and a lying mainstream media have unprecedented power over your news please consider making a donation to BPR to help us fight them. Now is the time. Truth has never been more critical!

Success! Thank you for donating. Please share BPR content to help combat the lies.


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

PLEASE JOIN OUR NEW COMMENT SYSTEM! We love hearing from our readers and invite you to join us for feedback and great conversation. If you've commented with us before, we'll need you to re-input your email address for this. The public will not see it and we do not share it.

Latest Articles