Located in Rome, a 9-minute walk from St. Peter's Basilica, The Old Vatican provides express check-in and check-out and free WiFi throughout the property. In the collegial Jesuit spirit, Francis appointed eight cardinals to serve as his core advisers on significant issues, and in the coming years, this group may have as much influence on the situation of gays in the priesthood as Francis himself. When Paul VI assumed the throne, in 1963, by one account he took his papal name not from any predecessor but from a former lover, a film actor. Sign up for our essential daily brief and never miss a story. Ireland’s Msgr. Occasionally such clerics are unmasked, usually by stories in the Italian press. The most senior prelate to lose his job was Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh. Visitors to Rome this Easter can have a once-in-a-lifetime experience: climbing the original stairs that Jesus is said to have walked on while on his way up to be judged by Pontius Pilate before his crucifixion. The Vatican’s COVID-19 commission said Tuesday it is working to help promote fair access to the coronavirus vaccine, especially for those who are most vulnerable. During Holy Week, he went to a juvenile prison and washed the feet of inmates, including two girls and two Muslims. A staunch opponent of gay marriage who had publicly called homosexuality a “moral degradation,” O’Brien was brought down in February by three priests and one ex-priest who accused him of “inappropriate contact” and predatory behavior when he was their bishop. The nearest airport is Rome Ciampino, 18 km from The Old Vatican, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service. My friends told me that this priest was gay, politically savvy, and well connected to the gay Church hierarchy in Rome. Encircled by a 2-mile border with Italy, Vatican City … Might this change? The name "old St. Peter's Basilica" has been used since the construction of the current basilica to distinguish the two buildings. (3) Sistine Chapel is inside the Vatican museum and is covered by your Vatican museum ticket. For gay clerics at the Vatican, one fundamental condition of their power, and of their priesthood, is silence, at least in public, about who they really are. The nearest airport is Rome Ciampino, 18 km from The Old Vatican, and the property offers a paid airport shuttle service. And they inhabit a secretive netherworld, because homosexuality is officially condemned. The culture of deception operates according to signals and conventions by which gay clerics navigate their lives. Free shipping on many items | Browse your favorite brands | affordable prices. “There are closeted gay priests who are vipers,” observes the theologian Mark D. Jordan, the author of The Silence of Sodom: Homosexuality in Modern Catholicism. The most imposing building is St. Peter’s Basilica, built during the 4th century and rebuilt during the 16th century. The museum is not free but is usually combined with other Vatican city landmarks. The portal Vatican News uses technical or similar cookies to make navigation easier and guarantee the use of the services. Total price: 24 €. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. Ancient walls look cool. Visiting the official website of the Holy See one can browse: the Magisterium of the Supreme Pontiffs (from Pope Leo XIII to Pope Francis); the fundamental texts of Catholicism in various languages (the Sacred Bible, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the documents of the Second Vatican Council and the Code of Canon Law); the documents of Dicasteries, Bodies and Institutions of the Roman Curia Supposedly, he loves to dish male colleagues with campy female nicknames. Neither Benedict nor Gänswein has publicly responded to any of this. The Catholic priesthood’s contemporary gay cultural memory begins in the middle of the last century. These things he made clear. Which in turn puts a premium on outward appearance and enforces conformity to a certain official ideal. As *National Catholic Reporter’*s John Allen, the dean of the American Vatican-watchers, told me, “There’s a kind of Catholic version of ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ that the Jesuits would be particularly noted for. That at least was the contention of the provocative gay French writer Roger Peyrefitte, whose 1976 allegations about Paul VI caused such a stir that Paul took to the balcony of St. Peter’s to denounce the “horrible and slanderous” accusations. Camp is perhaps the most powerful and pervasive of these codes, though it can be difficult to define. It has been the official home of all Popes since 1870. In 2010, for the better part of a month, one straight journalist pretended to be the boyfriend of a gay man who acted as a “honeypot” and entrapped actual gay priests in various sexual situations. One monk told me, “A lot of us will not condemn. Get the best deals on Vatican Stamp Collections and Lots when you shop the largest online selection at eBay.com. “Rumors are O.K., but not scandal,” Politi observes. Yet, before he became Francis, Jorge Bergoglio was a Jesuit. The priest was embarrassed: to have been chanced upon at this place; to have had his small evasions revealed. At The Old Vatican every room is equipped with a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. One private group of about 50 gay priests and laymen meets once a year, for a kind of retreat. (Stenico tried to persuade Italian newspapers that he’d just been playing along in order “to study how priests are ensnared” into gay sex as part of “a diabolical plan by groups of Satanists.” He was suspended from his Vatican position.) Even while their reliability is questionable, they demonstrate that playing the gay card (even if you yourself are gay) is an ancient Curial tactic. But in Rome these days the topic of gay priests in the upper reaches of the Holy See is hard to avoid. One day at the Vatican, this layman was amazed to see the dancer out of context, dressed in the uniform of a security guard. Others have recounted stories of conversions and deeply emotional experiences from their climb. Although there is no written documentation, tradition has it that Emperor Constantine's Mother, Helen, an avid collector of relics of Jesus in the 4th century, had the stairs brought over from Jerusalem. “This is almost an aspect of the Catholic religion itself,” Colm Tóibín has written in an essay on gays and Catholicism, “this business of knowing and not knowing something all at the same time, keeping an illusion separate from the truth.” It is also typical of Italian sexuality in general, and Italian homosexuality in particular. St. Peter's is famous as a place of pilgrimage and for its liturgical functions. (Nicknamed Bel Giorgio, or “Gorgeous George,” the rugged Gänswein skis, plays tennis, and pilots airplanes. But this couldn’t be that priest. The episodes recounted by the four men involved such consistent patterns over more than 30 years that some of O’Brien’s colleagues surely must have had their suspicions. Vatican displays Holy Stairs for the first time in 300 years. Yet gays in the Vatican, like spies in intelligence services, inhabit boxes within boxes. “When God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?” the Pope asked rhetorically. In hoc signo vinces, Constantine’s choice Now there’s nobody.”), Once you make a connection, it’s possible to use your monastery cell for sexual assignations, as long as you don’t make much noise. It is more or less impossible for gay clerics to articulate their affections in any way that does not amount to what an Anglo-Saxon mind might see as hypocrisy. “If you are truly loyal and entrusted with the highest level of responsibility, there has to be an extra liberty attached in order to be able to pull it off.”, Vows of celibacy don’t say anything about eye candy. All of them, whether actively or passively, have helped create these roles for themselves, and they can hardly imagine a different reality—unless they were to emerge from the closet and get thrown out of the priesthood. When we were alone, I spoke his name, telling him mine. Pope John XII, who reigned from 955 to 964, was accused of having sex with men and boys and turning the papal palace “into a whorehouse.” While trying to persuade a cobbler’s apprentice to have sex with him, Pope Boniface VIII, who reigned from 1294 to 1303, was said to have assured the boy that two men having sex was “no more a sin than rubbing your hands together.” After Paul II, who reigned from 1464 to 1471, died of a heart attack—while in flagrante delicto with a page, according to one rumor—he was succeeded by Sixtus IV, who kept a nephew as his lover (and made the nephew a cardinal at age 17). Emanuela Orlandi, the daughter of an employee at the Vatican, was just 15 years old when she went missing on her way to a music lesson back in 1983. "We know for certain that St. Helen transported the nails used to crucify Jesus and a portion of his cross, to a church near here," said Guerra. One gay former priest, who still lives in Rome, describes clerical camp as “a natural way of expressing [gay identity] while celibate.” Socially, he says, it is “a key that unlocks a further element of trust.” There’s nothing earth-shattering about this—it’s what every institution does—but “the Church has a lot more experience and practice at protecting itself. Some gay celibate clerics use the saunas not for sex but to experience a sense of fellowship with others like themselves. "Remember that the great Renaissance Popes sought to restore Rome and the Vatican Area to be the glory of the civilized world," says Diane Apostolos-Cappadona , a Catholic studies professor at Georgetown. In 2007, Monsignor Tommaso Stenico met a young man in an online chat room and invited him to his Vatican office, where their conversation—in which Stenico denied that gay sex was a sin, touched the man’s leg, and said, “You’re so hot”—was secretly videotaped and then broadcast on Italian television. Contact the seller- opens in a new window or tab and request a shipping method to your location. In 1965 the Vatican Council II was held in the city. But la bella figura matters just as much at ordinary moments. Vatican's Swiss Guards wear new 3D-printed helmets. I have nothing financially. Though no solid evidence has ever emerged, it is treated as common knowledge by many in Rome, who cite stereotypes galore, including his fussy fashion sense (his ruby-red slippers, his “Valentino red” capes); his crusade to nail down why “homosexual actions” are “intrinsically disordered” (many closeted gay men, from Roy Cohn to Cardinal O’Brien, have made the most extraordinary efforts to condemn homosexuality); and his bromance with Archbishop Georg Gänswein, his longtime personal secretary. 179 ulasan dan 25 foto menanti di Booking.com When he made to greet the man, the guard signaled him to stay back, raising a finger to his lips in a quiet “Shhhhh … ”. At the top of the stairs is a room called the Holy of Holies. In Rome, the author learns how they navigate the dangerous paradox of their lives. Kids below 6 years old enter for free and do not need ticket reservations. Vanity Fair may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. In every detail, parties celebrating appointment to the Vatican and other high Church offices can be lavish—“like a posh girl’s wedding”—with many clerics in attendance being “gay men wearing everything handmade, perfect, queer as it comes,” observes one prominent figure in the Roman art world. “Everything is permitted because you are a prince of the court,” he says. Paul looked a laughingstock, and the Curia learned a lesson: better to ignore such charges than to amplify them by denial. In other words, “the priests become the symbols” that are deemed most important. The Vatican walls stayed even when the threats disappeared because a wall isn't always about keeping out bad guys. (Among the monsignor’s pickup lines: “Do you want to see the bed of John XXIII?”) There’s the supposedly straight man who has a secret life as a gay prostitute in Rome and posts photographs online of the innermost corridors of the Vatican. He told me this story, with its echoes of the parable of the Good Samaritan—in which a traveler is robbed, beaten, and left by the side of the road, and pious men do nothing to help him—to illustrate the every-man-for-himself dynamic of Rome’s gay clerical culture. Francis was quoted as saying, “The ‘gay lobby’ is mentioned, and it is true, it is there … We need to see what we can do.”. By closing this banner you consent to the use of cookies. One gay former seminarian recalled a night when three men beat him up and stole his wallet while numerous men in the crowded park stood by. According to the newspaper, the possible existence of this gay lobby was among the many secrets described in a two-volume, 300-page report bound in red and presented to Pope Benedict XVI by three cardinals he had appointed to investigate the affair known as “VatiLeaks.” That scandal, which raised fresh suspicions of endemic corruption within the Curia, had broken the previous year after Paolo Gabriele, the papal butler, made off with some of Benedict’s private papers and leaked them to the press. They may not act as a collective but are aware of one another’s existence. They are the ones who are always forgotten, and read out of the story from both sides.”. A Vatican priest I met with—he actually invited me to stop by his office near St. Peter’s because he said he wanted “to show that this is no secret,” though it’s secret enough that he can’t be named—is involved with this group, as part of an unofficial ministry in addition to his official duties. After Bergoglio became Pope Francis, YouTube clips of a sequence from Fellini’s Roma went viral among gay priests in Rome. They believe that nothing and no one could make the Church safe for them. Faithfuls kneel on the newly restored Holy Stairs. ", Two Raphael paintings unearthed at the Vatican after 500 years. The Old Vatican se nachází v římské čtvrti Vaticano Prati, 2,2 km od Vatikánu a náměstí Piazza Navona, 2,3 km od náměstí sv. He had the old Apostolic Palace destroyed and a new one built (the one you see today.) Marco Politi speculates that perhaps as many as 30 were eased out. This is the sort of idea that lights up the tinfoil hats of conspiracy theorists, and it doesn’t capture the slow, feudal, inefficient workings of the Vatican. I guess in one way I am,” he said, in the middle of a long and emotional narrative, before bringing the conversation to bedrock reality. 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