|The bishop of Pistoia, Tuscany, has
slammed two priests for allowing Muslim refugees to pray inside the
parish church of Vicofaro.
Fathers Massimo Biancalani and Alessandro Carmignani announced the
initiative late last week, after the parish welcomed 18 refugees. Biancalani told La Repubblica the decision to leave prayer mats next to the alter was part of helping the new arrivals feel at home. "I don't see how it's a problem, we can hardly make them pray in the cellar," he said.
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"Besides, all they need is a prayer mat and a position facing Mecca." “Anyone wanting to pray in the church is welcome and if they want to go elsewhere, they can do that too," he added. But Archbishop Fausto Tardelli said the plan was a step too far that
risked damaging attempts at integrating refugees into the local