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Krishna home in Rome

This article "Krishna home in Rome," was published in Winnipeg Free Press, June 1, 1977, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.  

ROME (AP) - Krishna, the Indian god, has found a home in Rome despite some police frowning and a cool attitude by the Vatican. 

Two young women, an American and an Italian, and a Scotsman introduced the cult in Rome three years ago when they lived for several months in a youth hostel. 

Now they have a "temple" in a rented two-storey villa in a park just outside the ancient Aurelian walls off the Caracalla Baths. 

"We do not meet excessive difficulties with Romans," Alida D'Ambrosio, 24, the Italian founder of the Rome temple, said in an interview. 

Recently, a dozen of her followers in ankle-length Indian garments took their "Hare Krishna" dance and chant into St. Peter's Square under the windows of Pope Paul's apartment, but police promptly urged them away. 

The other founders, Pamela Borden, from Madison, Wis., and David Naysmith, from Edinburgh, have left for India. 

The residents of the Rome temple, who have devoted their lives to preaching and proselytizing, number about 50, ranging from 20 to 35 in age, Miss D'Ambrosio said. About one-third are women. 

The cult's world leader, His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivendanta Swami Prabhupada, tried to be received by the Pope when he came to Rome in 1975. 

He was granted a meeting with Sergio Cardinal Pignedoli, head of the Vatican Secretarial for Non-Catholic Religions. 

Prabhupada told the Cardinal that Catholics should stop killing and eating animals if they wanted to become good worshippers. He said Christ was just another name of Krishna and that the commandment "Thou shalt not kill" refers to animals as well as humans. 

Miss D'Ambrosio said the Rome temple now was totally self-supporting through selling their books and the incense they manufactured. 

Reference: Winnipeg Free Press, Rome, Italy, 1977-06-01