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Excommunicated Priest Records Video Criticizing the Pope

11/24/2014 - 08h46

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CRISTINA CAMARGO
COLLABORATION FOR FOLHA

After being officially excommunicated by the Vatican, former Brazilian priest Roberto Francisco Daniel, 49, recorded a video in which he "talks" to Pope Francis and questions the punishment ordered by the Catholic Church.

He was excommunicated in April 2013 by the Diocese of Bauru (329 kilometers from São Paulo city) and still awaited confirmation of his punishment by the Holy See, which occurred on November 15, 2014.

Father Beto, as he is known, was punished after recording videos in which he defended same-sex marriage and second marriages for the divorced - he also questioned church dogmas.

In the video recorded after the Vatican's decision, he asks what he did wrong and questions the punishment.

"It's strange because you have appeared to be open to dialogue," he says, addressing the pope.

"Then my excommunication was ratified, which shows that dialogue isn't open. If the Church excommunicated me because I have reflected on some ideas, where is the open Church that you say you are building?"

Beto also asks about the pedophile priests who were removed from their duties, but not excommunicated by the Church.

He speculates that Pope Francis signed the excommunication order without having read the papers and attacks some Catholics.

"You have a clergy that often acts without ethics or transparency," he said.

The former priest also promoted a campaign on social networks with the hashtag "What do you say, pope?" based on the questionings in the video, which has already been accessed by more than 5,000 people on Youtube.

MATCHMAKER

A college professor and writer, the former priest still performs weddings, even after being excommunicated. He is hired by gay couples, divorcees or people who want a ceremony outside temples.

In the document that officializes his excommunication, the Vatican asks Catholics not to take part in Beto's services and says the weddings performed by him after the punishment aren't official.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

Read the article in the original language

Denise Guimarães - 3.mai.13/Folhapress
After being excommunicated by the Vatican, Roberto Francisco Daniel recorded a video in which he "talks" to Pope Francis
After being excommunicated by the Vatican, Roberto Francisco Daniel recorded a video in which he "talks" to Pope Francis

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