We'll receive a $25,000 grant if others match it by Pentecost. $24,045 to go. Your gift will be doubled!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org


By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 13, 2009

Thank goodness, justice has triumphed again. Msgr. Cesare Burgazzi will not be serving a prison sentence.

Msgr. Burgazzi, in case you've forgotten, is the Vatican official-- make that former Vatican official-- who was stopped by police as he cruised through a red-light district in Rome. Understandably, when the officers asked him for identification, he assumed they were kidnappers, and hit the gas. And when other police cars joined in the chase, he naturally assumed that they, too, were members of the notorious kidnapping gang whose members dress in police uniforms and drive squad cars. 

Eventually caught, Msgr. Burgazzi told the unfortunate cops-- the ones who weren't getting medical attention after he'd bowled them over: "You all have no idea who I am." Which was true, since he hadn't yielded his papers yet. 

When the monsignor was finally brought up on charges, and the word of his night's misadventures found their way into the Roman press, his colleagues at the Vatican Secretariat of State issued a statement that the news reports were "wholly without foundation"-- which means, in this context, that the news reports were accurate. Pressed for comment, the lead-footed cleric said that it was outrageous to suggest that he was prowling for young boys. Prowling for older boys, reporters duly noted, is not in itself illegal.

Resisting arrest apparently isn't illegal, either, so Msgr. Burgazzi is walking away from the charges. It's a remarkable ending to a remarkable story. Seeing how the machinery of Italian justice handled the case, this observer can't help thinking that maybe the monsignor was right when he told the poor cops that they didn't know who they were tangling with. If nothing else he was a convincing witness in his own defense.

Burgazzo also said a year earlier he had had a similar 'kidnapping' experience.

Now that he's free from the threat of imprisonment-- and free, too, of the obligations of work at the Vatican, having been quietly eased out of his post-- Msgr. Burgazzi will be free to tool around the streets of Rome at night once again. Here's hoping he doesn't have yet another encounter with kidnappers, because I somehow doubt the police will rush to his aid.


An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Spring Challenge Grant
Progress toward our Spring Challenge Grant goal ($24,045 to go):
$25,400.00 $1,355.00
95% 5%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: parochus - Oct. 14, 2009 2:39 PM ET USA

    "Quietly eased out of his post"? Don't have the 2009 Annuario, but he's still listed on the roll for the SS in the 2008...

  • Posted by: a son of Mary - Oct. 14, 2009 1:08 PM ET USA

    Anybody who gets busted and starts off "You have no idea who I am" usually has something to hide. And...it usually isn't good!

  • Posted by: crazylikeknoxes - Oct. 14, 2009 9:24 AM ET USA

    Haven't you read Dan Brown? It's clearly the Illuminati out to get him.

Matching Campaign
Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

A silent scandal: Catholic schools promoting morally unacceptable vaccines 24 hours ago
A More Militant Church? April 24
How we'll know if the Vatican and the US hierarchy are serious about deposing negligent bishops April 24
Final take on the LCWR: A time to plant, a time to uproot April 24
With the LCWR, has the Vatican taken Gamaliel's advice? April 24

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope challenges world leaders' silence on persecution of Christians CWN - April 6
Pope outlines plans for the extraordinary jubilee of mercy CWN - April 13
Vatican completes doctrinal assessment of Leadership Conference of Women Religious CWN - April 16
Pope accepts resignation of Bishop Finn CWN - April 21