The Vatican denied a report Saturday that the Pope’s resignation was rooted in scandals involving sex, money and gay priests, CNN reported. The Vatican also denies reports that Pope Benedict’ decision to promote Monsignor Ettore Balestrero to a post in Colombia was made to keep him quiet, Reuters reported. Talk of the Vatican's alleged gay sex and money scandals are buzzing on the Internet and the blogosphere.
A Vatican spokesman, Father Federico Lombardi, called the report about the Pope moving Balestero to cover-up a scandal involving infighting over the running of the Vatican's bank “absurd, totally without foundation.” He added that the decision to move Balestero was made weeks ago.
CNN notes that reports from Italy’s La Repubblica newspaper say that the Pope's resignation was connected to the leaks of secret documents last year that showed an internal dispute over the running of the bank.
La Repubblica also reported that there was a secret network of gay Vatican officials and that the group met for sexual encounters at various places including a sauna in Rome and a home outside the city.
So far the Vatican has not specifically confirmed or denied the gay sex scandal rumor.
The Vatican Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone called the scandal reports "deplorable" especially so close to a time when the cardinals will meet to select a new pope. Bertone added that the “false news stories” can cause serious damage to individuals and institutions.
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