[A spirit may have guided him but not the Holy One]
Paolo Gabriele: “It was the Holy Spirit that guided me”
The Pope’s butler speaks
He describes himself as a benefactor of the Catholic Church and refers to the “centrality” of the Holy Spirit to explain his actions. Last night, L’Infedele, a political talk show on Italian television channel LA7, broadcast a comprehensive interview with Paolo Gabriele, the Pope’s former butler who was arrested in May, on charges of stealing confidential documents from Benedict XVI’s apartment. Part of the interview had already been broadcast on LA7 without, however, revealing Gabriele’s identity. The former butler has provided a description of the individual that made the publication of the documents possible: there are at least twenty or so people involved, none of whom have any ties with powerful figures but who “share their leader’s [that is, the Pope’s] desire for purity.”
“It is an act of anger, because there is a sort of code of silence that is preventing facts from being brought to light, not because of power struggle but because of fear. In our country, one can carry out a massacre and leave undisturbed and 24 hours later, no one can talk about what happened,” Gabriele said, referring to the Estermann case. “Or a little a girl disappears for 30 years and there is no one who can give any information about what happened,” the former butler added, alluding to the Emanuela Orlandi case. The popular Pope Ratzinger Blog comments: “To think that it has been years that in our own small way we have been saying that the Pope wants to clean house but is finding it difficult, or rather, there is someone who is constantly trying to put obstacles in his way in the Curia and in the various dioceses.”
The blog adds: “We needed Gabriele to come along to teach us this! The truth is that the real power is somewhere else and the Pope with all his talk of transparency and cleaning up is getting on many people’s nerves. But every cloud has a silver lining: reporting on Gabriele’s statements will necessarily involve references to the two magic words, Pope and clean up.