In a candid conversation with the 90 year old Eugnio Scalfari, the pope seemingly let this candid piece of information slip.
But it wasn’t on record. Eugenio Scalfari writes for La Repubblica which carries the Pope interview.
What seems to have occurred is that the pope has informed the world that nearly 1 in 50 priests (Around 8000 of them) are paedophiles and they include bishops and cardinals. And that the pope thinks that overturning the celibacy rule is the solution.
I sort of disagree on that part. Child molesters often are married and/or not celibate. What they have is power over children that is unfettered.
Later in the day, the Vatican was already pushing back against the purported interview.
“It is important to notice that words that Mr. Scalfari attributes to the Pope in quotations come from the expert journalist Scalfari’s own memory of what the Pope said,” spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said in a statement collected by Vatican Insider. “And it is not an exact transcription of a recording nor [was there] a review of such a transcript by the Pope himself to whom the words are attributed.” He added that this was not “an interview in the normal use of the word, as if there had been a series of questions and answers that faithfully and exactly reflect the precise thoughts of the one being interviewed.”
This isn’t the first time the pope has said something “controversial” (by Catholic standards) if you remember? In April he was off telling people that divorce isn’t all that bad which is a major change from the official Catholic Party line.
If this is the new Church? Then its been willing to accept divorce and willing to admit the mistakes and problem with abusive priests and this is a window into how bad and how deep the prior cover up for the Church was if sex offenders are becoming cardinals and bishops.
If not? It’s a rather thoughtless statement made by the pope.