He introduced he would go away the priesthood altogether, after which spent 4 years, as he put it, within the wilderness. He had a “double popping out” to his dad and mom, about leaving the priesthood and being homosexual, they usually didn’t speak to him for years. He ran into monks he knew at cruising spots and varied bathhouses, together with one in a constructing owned by the Vatican. He stated he went to drug-fueled events on the Abbey of Montecassino, which traces its roots again to St. Benedict. He earned some cash with non-public classes in Latin and faith and a few preliminary reporting jobs, however he felt misplaced.

In 2013, a Cardinal delivered a letter from Mr. Lepore explaining his scenario to the newly elected Pope Francis. In October, Mr. Lepore’s telephone rang, with Francis telling him he admired him for his “consistency” and “braveness” in not residing a double life, and that he needed to assist him together with his financial travails, in keeping with Mr. Lepore.

(A Vatican spokesman didn’t return a name for remark.)

However aside from an envelope with 2,000 euros, about $2,400, from one other Cardinal (“a kindness”), no job ever materialized. Francis signed his dispensation papers in August 2014, eradicating him from the clerical state.

Free from the church, Mr. Lepore threw himself into activism for homosexual rights. In February 2019 he turned the star witness of Frédéric Martel’s buzzy e-book “Within the Closet of the Vatican,” the place Mr. Lepore’s estimate that 80 p.c of the Vatican workers are homosexual made a splash.

Later that yr, Ivan Scalfarotto, a politician who’s now an undersecretary in Italy’s Inside Ministry, advised the brand new editor of Linkiesta a couple of man who knew every little thing in regards to the Vatican. The editor, Christian Rocca, was intrigued. Mr. Lepore despatched him an article in regards to the Vatican’s dim view of the all of a sudden pious flip of the nationalist chief Matteo Salvini. Mr. Rocca despatched it to a Vatican official he knew who assured him it was spot on.

“I found this gem,” Mr. Rocca stated.

Final yr Mr. Rocca floated the thought of a day by day column in Latin, which he admitted was not nice for search engine marketing, however appeared prefer it is perhaps enjoyable.

“It looks as if insanity,” Mr. Lepore responded.

After which he instantly obtained to it.

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