An Italian newspaper is blaming the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on the ‘gay influence’ within the Vatican.
Referring to an internal report prepared by three senior cardinals, La Repubblica claims there was an ‘inappropriate influence’ by gay priests in internal Holy See affairs.
Filed by cardinals Julian Herranz, Josef Tomko and Salvatore De Giorgi, it was commissioned by Benedict himself.
The newspaper suggests when Pope Benedict saw the report back in December, it hardened his resolve to quit as the leader of the Roman Catholic Church.
In the 300-page report, it speaks of ‘Impropriam Influentiam’ on the part of various lobbies within the Vatican, including some of a ‘worldly nature’.
The Italian newspaper specifically referred to Angelo Balducci, who was accused of being a member of a ‘gay ring’ active within the Vatican, as well as preying on choral boys three years ago.
The internal report was commissioned after the so-called ‘Vatileaks scandal’, which ended with the arrest and conviction of the Pope’s butler Paolo Gabriele last year. He was found guilty of having stolen confidential documents from the papal apartment.
La Repubblica did not name its Vatican source, and did not provide a direct quotation from any part of the report.
Speaking to Gay Star News, a Vatican spokesman said they had no comment to make on the allegations.
The report comes as there is wild speculation on whether there is a ‘real’ reason behind the resignation of the pope, the first in nearly 600 years.
While the 85-year-old has cited his age and ill health, experts say his resignation comes against a backdrop of controversy over his extremist stance on homosexuality and, separately, the pedophile priest scandals that have rocked the church.
In the past, Benedict has called gay people a ‘defection of human nature’ and a ‘threat to world peace’.