, PALERMO, Oct 3 – Pope Benedict XVI held an open-air mass in front of tens of thousands of people in Italy\’s Mafia heartland Sicily on Sunday, where he denounced the "shame of evil".
"One must have shame of evil, which offends God and man, one must have shame of evil which harms the civil and religious community with actions that do not like being brought into light," said the pope during his first visit to the island since becoming pontiff.
Organisers said 100,000 people attended the mass in bright sunshine overlooking the sea in the city of Palermo. Police put the figure at 30,000.
The pope said faith made humanity possible, even when people faced a shortage of jobs, uncertainty about the future, moral and physical suffering, and organised crime.
"People of Sicily, look to the future with hope," he said.