In a small country village in Sicily, there were two brothers, renown members of the local Mafia.
They were mean, bad and very rich.
No one had a good word to say about them.
Indeed, everyone seemed to have a story about how they had either been cheated or maligned by the brothers.
One day, one of the brothers, Luigi died.
The surviving brother, Jo - with a rare touch of conscience felt that something nice should be said about his brother Luigi at the funeral.
So he went to the local vicar and said:
I know that folk in the village hate us, and they dont know the half of what we have been up to. However, I want you to say something nice about Luigi at his funeral.
I want you to say that Luigi was a saint when you preach.
If you will agree to do that, Ill show my gratitude by giving £100,000 towards the repair of the church.
And here’s the cheque for the amount.
If you dont, you know my reputation.
The vicar thought about it fleetingly agreed and took the cheque.
A week later, the whole village turned out for the funeral and everyone wondered what the vicar would say.
After the opening hymns had been sung and the readings had been read, the vicar climbed up into the pulpit and delivered his sermon.
Eyeing the brother, sitting in the front row, the vicar said how evil the pair of them had been.
He went on to say how Luigi had cheated, not only in business but on his wife, how he had lied and how had had no concern for anyone but himself.
In fact he went on to say what a downright scoundrel Luigi had been.
After ten minutes of preaching in this vein, the vicar, being the man of integrity, ended his sermon with these words:
"But compared to his brother, Jo - Luigi was a saint