Church denies inmates 'anti-Mass mutiny'

Prelate says he had 'dialogue' with'Ndrangheta inmates

(ANSA) Vatican City, July 7 - A Calabrian bishop denied Monday reports that convicted mafia inmates at a prison in the region had refused to attend Mass following a warning by Pope Francis that mobsters will be excommunicated.
    "There was a dialogue but there was no mutiny nor was there a desire not to go to Mass," the bishop of Larino Gianfranco De Luca, told Vatican Radio.
    "I was received with joy and brotherhood when I went to see them," the prelate said of a visit to the Larino prison where many members of 'Ndrangheta, the Calabrian mafia, are serving sentences.
    "It is true that questions were put to the chaplain before the mass. They asked 'what is this excommunication? Why? What does it mean for us?'" the bishop said.
    Pope Francis during a recent visit to Calabria warned that members of 'Ndrangheta risk excommunication.