All hell has broken loose after a conservative Catholic blog published revelations of Sex in the City – the Vatican City. The Pillar claimed it obtained information about Vatican City and other priestly hookups from ‘publicly available data’. The data breach has led to the resignation of one high profile American Catholic priest whose phone data indicated Grindr hookups and visits to gay bars.
The Vatican City data covers a period of 26 weeks in 2018. During that time, at least 32 mobile devices emitted hookup or dating app signals from secure areas of Vatican City. In other words, areas inaccessible to the public.
At least 16 of the devices emitted signals from Grindr. The remaining devices used various other straight and gay hookup apps.
Despite the very obvious lesson of the first book of the Holy Bible — enforced celibacy does not work — the Catholic Church continues to insist that priests refrain from sexual activity.
Gay Sex in the (Vatican) City
Frédéric Martel previously exposed the Vatican City gay mafia in his 2019 book In the Closet of the Vatican. Martel interviewed “41 cardinals, 52 bishops and monsignori, 45 apostolic nuncios, secretaries of nunciatures or foreign ambassadors, 11 Swiss Guards and over 200 Catholic priests and seminarians.’
Among the revelations in the book, the story of Cardinal Trujillo, former head of the Pontifical Council for the Family. Trujillo spearheaded John Paul II’s war on gays in the 1980s and 1990s and relentlessly condemned the use of condoms at the height of the AIDS crisis. He consistently claimed that condoms offered no protection against HIV.
Yet Trujillo’s master of ceremonies showed Martel the apartment where the cardinal took innumerable seminarians, young men and male sex workers for sexual encounters.
In Rome, Trujillo lived in a 900-square-metre apartment in the Palazzo di San Calisto and drove several cars including Ferraris.
There, he could access the elite male prostitution service run by two of John Paul II’s favourite cardinals.
A criminal trial heard phone calls recorded by Italian police in which various male escorts were offered for hire.
“I have a situation in Naples… it’s really not something to miss… 32 years old, 1 metre 93, very handsome.”
“I have a Cuban situation.”
“I have two blacks.”
“I’ve got a footballer.”
While their underlings faced prosecution, the two cardinals escaped any scrutiny because of their diplomatic immunity.
Martel documented cardinals and other Vatican officials hitting on young men, hiring sex workers, organising chem-sex parties, and paying for it all with church money.
Francesco Lepore, a priest who previously worked for popes Benedict XVI and Francis told Martel he estimated 80% of Vatican clerics were gay.
Priestly Grindr hookups in the US
Another report on The Pillar detailed hookup app data from 10 plus church premises in the Newark, US archdiocese. The data, from 2018 to 2020, showed frequent evidence of gay and straight hookup apps being used in parish rectories.
The reports led to the resignation of the general secretary of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Monsignor Jeffrey Burrill resigned last month after the blog alleged his phone data showed he patronised gay bars and met Grindr hookups.
But the data breach again highlights issues of privacy when using hookup apps.
Grindr is currently investigating possible links to network providers, location data brokers and ad networks in providing the information.
“This work involved much more than just a small blog.”
For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.