Religion: Bovio's Baptism

Bovio Fanelli is known in his village of Riccia, Italy, as a Communist and militant atheist. When he appeared in church to be godfather at a baptism, the priest, Don Alfonso Manocchio, declared Fanelli unacceptable and refused to baptize the baby. Then and there Communist Fanelli scooped up a pitcher of holy water and poured it on the baby's head, saying: "I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost."

Fanelli committed a grave sin in thus performing a nonclerical baptism in the presence of a priest, said the Vatican last week. But nevertheless, he had...

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