More Francis Mercy? Italian Priest Excommunicated for Calling Pope ‘Usurper’

An Italian priest was excommunicated Tuesday for calling Pope Francis a “usurper” in his New Year’s Eve homily marking the first anniversary of the death of Francis’s predecessor Benedict XVI.

Don Ramon Guidetti, a parish priest at Livorno on the Tuscan coast, was excommunicated by his local bishop for telling his flock that the Argentine pontiff, who took over after German pope Benedict sensationally quit in February 2013, “is not the pope, he’s a usurper”.

Father Guidetti said later Tuesday that it was a “mark of pride to be out of this Church, which is a tyranny”.

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