Eighty per cent of priests working in the Vatican are gay, according to a new book to be published next week.
Frédérick Martel, author of In the Closet of the Vatican, conducted 1,500 interviews with 41 cardinals, 52 bishops, 45 papal ambassadors, 11 Swiss guards and 200 priests, according to Catholic website The Tablet.
According to Martel, while 80 per cent of Vatican clerics are gay, not all are sexually active.
However, many are in long-standing discreet relationships, and others engage in casual gay sex or use male prostitutes.
The book also claims that the late Colombian Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, who defended the Holy See’s intransigent stance against homosexuality, hired gay prostitutes.
The book also claims that the more homophobic a Vatican cleric is then the more likely he is to be gay.
In the Closet of the Vatican by Frédérick Martel is published by Bloomsbury Books on 21 February.