Lurid accusations of priests involved in sex orgies, porn videos and prostitution have emerged from several parishes in Italy recently, sending shock waves all the way to the Vatican and challenging the high standards that Pope Francis has demanded of clergy.
In the southern city of Naples, for example, a priest was recently suspended from the parish of Santa Maria degli Angeli over claims he held gay orgies and used internet sites to recruit potential partners whom he paid for sex.
The allegations concerning the Rev. Mario D’Orlando were brought to the attention of the diocese when an anonymous letter was sent to a Naples bishop. D’Orlando denied the charges when he was summoned by the city’s archbishop, Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, but is now facing a formal inquiry conducted by local church officials.
“He has been removed from his position while the investigation is underway,” a spokesman for the cardinal told Religion News Service. “I have no further comment.”
In the northern city of Padua, a 48-year-old priest, the Rev. Andrea Contin, is facing defrocking as well as judicial proceedings amid accusations he had up to 30 lovers, some of whom he took to a swingers’ resort in France.
“I am incredulous and pained by the accusations,” Cipolla told a news conference last month. “This is unacceptable behavior for a priest, a Christian and even for a man.”
One woman, who claims to have been Contin’s lover for more than three years, claimed the priest carried sex toys and bondage equipment, prostituted his lovers on wife-swapping websites and also invited other priests from the area to sex parties.
This article continues at [Religion News] Claims of sex orgies, prostitution and porn videos shake Catholic Church in Italy