"We don't have any explanation of what 'gay lobby' means," said Rocco Palmo, a Vatican watcher who runs Whispers in the Loggia,” a website on Catholic news and church politics.

There has been a lot of talk and speculations recently about an alleged gay lobby in the Vatican.

Most devout Catholics hoped the gay lobby was, perchance, a stunningly decorated entrance hall somewhere in the Eternal City. Alas, hints that the Curia harbored a network of gay clergy surfaced last year in a series of leaks to the Italian news media.  “La Repubblica,” a leading Italian newspaper, reported that the Cardinals, appointed by the former Pope to find the source of the leaks, investigated high-level Vatican clergy involved in homosexual affairs who might have been vulnerable to blackmail. They found evidence of a “gay network” within the Vatican but gave few details about it.

And now the confirmation of its existence comes from the very top. Pope Francis said a “gay lobby” is present inside the Vatican: “…there are holy people, …but there is also a stream of corruption.”

SFGN is proud to contribute to the secrecy breakdown with its own whistle blower.

Father Tony Adams, our Senior Features Correspondent, was interviewed last week by an Italian daily about his past experience in the Vatican.

He was spending time in Southern Italy, for Alyson Adventures/Hanns Ebenstenn Tours for their "Gay Cycling Puglia Experience” with home base at Villa Cappelli. The owners of the Villa, Paul Cappelli and Steven Crutchfield, are becoming community leaders, despite being Americans (Paul is originally from Italy and his gay cousin is the governor of Puglia.) Paul had been contacted by a newspaper about gay marriage and gay tourism in Puglia. He told the reporters that he had a guest at the Villa Cappelli who is a Catholic priest who does gay marriages.  “La Gazzetta del Mezzogiorno” quickly sent two reporters to interview Father Tony.

These are some of the Q&As paraphrased and translated from Italian:

Q) You have never been suspended by the Vatican?

A) No I am still a priest and in the USA. I regularly officiate and perform gay weddings.

What I have learned during my tenure at the Vatican is that the clergy loves power and when I was there

I had a sexual relationship with a high prelate, but I was not the only one.

Q) Are you sure you have not been excommunicated?

a) Absolutely not, and I am tired of this veil of hypocrisy that engulfs the Church. Everybody inside the Vatican knew about the affairs between priests and bishops and cardinals, everybody pretended it wasn’t happening.

Q) Did you have an affair with someone high up in the Church hierarchy?

A) Yes, I was young and I did not resist his sexual advances, I did it hoping to further my career.

Q) Why do you feel you have to tell your story?

A) My crusade against the Church’s hypocrisy started when I saw the hard line position the Vatican took against gay couples and same sex marriage. A large number of priests within the church and the Vatican are gay, they have sex and even love affairs, it is time the Church stops pretending it is not happening. It is not acceptable.

After the newspaper hit the stands I spoke to Father Tony in Italy.

This is what he had to say to complement the interview:

“I would hate to give the impression that Vatican City is a hotbed of gay sex. It is a hotbed of gay sexual desire, but most of the priests, bishops and cardinals in the Vatican do not have sex. Power is their indulgence and when they court power, they give up sex which would very easily make them inconvenient and result in their being driven out of the power structure. That is why I declined most of the opportunities I had for sex in the Vatican. Machiavellian sex is distributed parsimoniously. It doesn't pay to be easy.”

The fact that most bishops and cardinals deny themselves gay sex is probably the reason they feel free to demand that gay Catholics do the same. They are proud of their misguided celibacy and don't want the rest of us to enjoy what they deny themselves. This is not spiritual leadership. This is twisted and perverse shepherding.

For those of you who can read Italian here is the link to the newspaper article


Tony Adams, a Roman Catholic priest who has been on an extended vacation from that vocation for many years, is Senior Features Correspondent with South Florida Gay News. He is also the editor of the 20 member queer arts and culture blog, Queer New York.