I was just directed to this article (ht: Plaidman!) alleging that Francesco Forgione, aka, “Padre Pio,” a “saint” so popular in Italy that a recent survey said more people there pray to him than to Jesus or Mary (!), faked his “stigmata” using carbolic acid. While that is all very interesting, what I found most intriguing was the reaction of the legions of people dedicated to “Padre Pio.” Now remember, they aren’t worshipping the man, see, they are only praying to him and asking for his intercession and things like that. And Rome has assured us, infallibly even, that prayer is not worship and dulia is not worship and we don’t need to worry about all this idolatry stuff because, as Patrick Madrid mentioned in our debate, folks back in the past have had problems with idolatry, but we don’t have the same problems today, so that is why we do not have to worry about those texts in the Bible that prohibit such things. But anyway, note the response to even daring to suggest that Padre Pio might just have been faking his alleged godliness:

The new allegations were greeted with an instant dismissal from his supporters. The Catholic Anti-Defamation League said Mr Luzzatto was a liar and was “spreading anti-Catholic libels”.

Pietro Siffi, the president of the League, said: “We would like to remind Mr Luzzatto that according to Catholic doctrine, canonisation carries with it papal infallibility.

“We would like to suggest to Mr Luzzatto that he dedicates his energies to studying religion properly.”

   That can’t be how anyone would respond to such an allegation, is it? Surely not! I mean, we have documented repeatedly how fair and even handed Roman Catholic apologists are in responding to criticism and refutation, so this is truly amazing, isn’t it?
   Excuse me while I extract my tongue from my cheek.

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