THE CAUSE of beatification has opened for Italian Sister Maria Laura Mainetti, a 60-year-old religious murdered by three girls during a satanic rite in 2000.
Bishop Alessandro Maggiolini of Como solemnly opened the process in Chiavenna.
“After the time of sorrow and mourning, now is the moment of joy and light,” Mgr Ambrogio Balatti, archpriest of Chiavenna San Lorenzo, told Avvenire.
Sister Laura was stabbed 18 times after being taken to a dark alley by two 17-year-olds and a 16-year-old.
Mgr Balatti said: “The three hapless girls could find no better excuse to attract Sister Laura, than to convince her that one of them was expecting a child, that she had been rejected by her family and boyfriend, and that she didn’t know what to do or where to go.
“It makes me angry when they say that Sister Laura was naive. She took every precaution, but so did the girls. They were able to set up an astute and diabolic plan.” Police learned that the killers wanted to sacrifice a priest in their satanic rite – and their first choice for a victim was Mgr Balatti. “At that time, interest in satanism and occultism had become a fad,” said the archpriest. “Even dress, music and some books contributed to the spread of such a tendency.
The killers said that the nun died forgiving them.