Dear Chuck,

I am an avid reader of News of the Weird. It’s a regular highlight in my week. But this week [June 4] I was a little disturbed with the blurb on Padre Pio. Now, I’m not a religious fanatic or kind of extremist, so please don’t take me the wrong way, but I thought I should say something. I may be wrong but I was under the impression that the purpose of News of the Weird is to put forward some of the world’s bizarre and strange happenings as well as to point out ironies, both for the sake of amusement. Under that theory, and with the understanding that most people don’t know anything about Padre Pio or for that matter what the stigmata is and the sacredness behind it, are we making fun of this? If you were to write that same blurb and replace Padre Pio with Mother Teresa, would it have the same sense of amusement? I doubt it. I don’t think those who are in line for sainthood should be put in the same category as most of your other articles. Please don’t think I don’t have a sense of humor–I do and I realize that it was not your or the Chicago Reader’s intent to pick fun at Padre Pio or the Catholic faith. I just felt the need to bring this to light.

Thank you and keep ’em coming!

Dianne M. Pontarelli

Northwest side