Around 80 percent of Vatican priests are gay, according to a new book which details alleged secret relationships, male prostitutes and stunning hypocrisy from the most anti-gay members of upper echelons of the Catholic Church.
French journalist Frederic Martel’s new book, ‘In the Closest of the Vatican,’ claims that the more homophobic the priest, the more likely they are to be gay.
While not all the priests detailed in the 570-page book act on their sexual preferences, many are allegedly engaging in relationships with their fellow fathers, while some prefer casual hook ups and others are hiring male prostitutes, according to the review in Catholic publication the Tablet.
Martel’s scandalous claims come after he spent four years interviewing over 1,500 people, including 200 priests, 41 cardinals and 52 bishops, diplomatic officials, guards and others in the Vatican. Martel, who was a former adviser to the French government and is gay, repeatedly visited Rome where he sometimes stayed in the Vatican or Holy See properties in Rome.
Martel’s publishers have described the book as a “startling account of corruption and hypocrisy at the heart of the Vatican.” One of the claims is that the late Colombian cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo used gay prostitutes, despite his staunch defense of the Church’s views on homosexuality.
The book is to be released February 21, on the same day as Pope Francis’ sexual abuse summit. While the book does not focus on the Catholic Church’s problems with child sex abuse, Martel thinks the secretive sexual culture makes it difficult for secretly gay priests to denounce abusers.“The issue of homosexuality is a very serious issue that must be adequately discerned from the beginning with the candidates [for the priesthood].” Pope Francis said in December.