Catholic Culture Overview
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Leading Italian bishop, Vatican newspaper pay tribute to ‘Via Crucis of a Gay Boy’

March 26, 2024

The Vatican newspaper has published Bishop Francesco Savino’s preface to Via Crucis di un ragazzo gay [Via Crucis of a Gay Boy], a new book by Luigi Testa, an Italian law professor.

Appointed a bishop in 2015, Bishop Savino has been the vice president of the Italian Episcopal Conference since 2022. Father Sergio Massironi, an official of the Dicastery for the Promoting Integral Human Development, contributed an afterword to the book.

In conjunction with Bishop Savino’s preface—which focused more on the prelate’s own reflections than on the book’s content—the Vatican newspaper’s website published a photograph of two shirtless men alongside another man in a T-shirt who is carrying a cross. A fuller version of the photograph was published in the print edition (p. 6).

“The synodal reflection on the family, crowned by the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia of Pope Francis, pushed the Church to emerge more courageously from itself and its own customs, to embrace reality: the flesh and blood of lives called to the joy of love,” said Bishop Savino. “It is one of the most embodied joys of existence and everyone has their own wonderful and tormented path with which to expose themselves to the intimacy of other lives.”

“We have a profoundly evolving understanding of sexuality, much richer, freer and more open than was given in traditional societies,” Bishop Savino continued. “Often as an ecclesial community we run the risk of fearing rather than welcoming whatever good can emerge from the relationships between people with their own and other people’s corporeality.”

“This book leads us to taste the faith of those whom the Church has often dismissed as public sinners, denied sacraments, ministries and above all voice, name, visibility,” the prelate added. “In how many pronouncements, in how many communities, in how many homes have we made the children loved by God feel wrong [sbagliati]?”

After thanking Father Massironi, “the editorial director of this series,” Bishop Savino said that the book’s author “will now be able to nourish personal meditation and our community prayer: by revealing himself with his name and surname, he emerges as a luminous witness for the Church of our time and brings to light the work of God who overcomes human slowness and prejudices, all too human. Yes, dear readers: God surpasses us on every side, he is newer than any trend or doctrine, he gives us this time of ours as kairos in which to open ourselves to his life.”

Bishop Savino concluded:

The Church is either inclusive or it is not! The ongoing synodal process may help us grow in this inclusiveness to the extent that we are willing to heal many lacerations. They often concern the most intimate sphere of the baptized, that is, the emotional dimension. Let no one, therefore, be scandalized by this via crucis: it is the way of Jesus who, wanting to love everyone radically and definitively, pronounced the least understood of the beatitudes: “Blessed is he who is not scandalized by me.”


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  • Posted by: Retired01 - Mar. 26, 2024 6:54 PM ET USA

    Unless Bishop Savino is clueless, which is something hard to believe from the VP of the Italian Bishop Conference, he knows that he can get away with his preface to the book. He knows that he is well protected.

  • Posted by: feedback - Mar. 26, 2024 10:10 AM ET USA

    Bp Savino and Fr Massironi should disclose whether they themselves are gays or not. The same applies to Fr J. Martin SJ and other clergy involved in promoting the homosexual agenda. They need to stop pretending to be impartial observers if their very own sexual proclivities make their opinions biased. Jesus says, "From the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks," and "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate one and love the other, or you will be devoted to one and despise the other."