St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City – Photo: Andreas Tille, via Wikimedia Commons.
Thirty-four Italian priests and six seminarians have been accused by a male escort of engaging in gay sex in a 1200-page document sent to the Vatican.
The allegations were put together by male escort Francesco Mangiacapra, and sent from the Archdiocese of Naples. He told the local media that he could no longer allow the “actively gay” priests’ “hypocrisy.”
“The aim is not to hurt the people mentioned, but to help them understand that their double life, however seemingly convenient, is not useful to them or to all the people for whom they should be a guide and an example to follow,” Mangiacapra said, according to the Corriere della Sera.
The document contains pages of explicit erotic photos, WhatsApp messages and other evidence. However, Mangiacapra said none of the 40 members were accused of pedophilia or sexual relations with a minor.
“We’re talking about sins, not crimes,” Mangiacapra said.
The current Archbishop of Naples, Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, said that the priests named in the dossier had never been active in Naples.
He said he passed the dossier along because “there remains the gravity of the cases for which those who have erred must pay the price, and be helped to repent for the harm done.”
This is not the first scandal that has plagued the Vatican this year. A Vatican tribunal judge was issued with a 14-month suspension last month for sexual molestation and possessing child pornography.
In 2016, the Vatican made clear that gay men could not become priests, noting that anyone engaged in homosexual activities or supporting “gay culture” cannot be admitted to the seminary or holy orders.