Reams of private
George appears to play a minor role in the real-life Vatican whodunit that the Italian press has dubbed “Vatileaks.” Late last month, the pope’s butler was arrested on suspicions that he leaked private letters, including some addressed to
According to Vatican expert John Allen, the book includes what Nuzzi claims is an encrypted 2011 cable from the Apostolic Nuncio in Washington relaying a plea from George to Benedict’s Secretary of State. George asks that the Vatican official step in and block the
Sant'Egidio, a Catholic movement that promotes peace, fights poverty and helps run George’s titular parish in Rome, St. Bartholomew, apparently planned to honor Quinn for abolishing the death penalty in Illinois.
The memo, apparently sent in March of last year from the Apostolic Nuncio, said that the cardinal and bishops felt the honor was "inopportune" because of Quinn’s support for gay marriage and legalized
Colleen Dolan, a spokeswoman for the cardinal, said George knew about his cameo in the book. But she would not confirm or deny whether the memo was fact or fiction.
“A private conversation between the cardinal and the nuncio -- that’s equal to a conversation with the pope in form,” Dolan said. “I couldn’t comment on that.”
But the scenario is not outside the realm of possibility, she said.
“There’s a policy where the U.S. church does not encourage awards to be given to people whose policies are opposite of church teaching like abortion,” Dolan said. “Remember the Obama thing at Notre Dame? It’s the same thing.”
Quinn's spokeswoman said the governor was unable to go to Rome to receive the award. She would not say whether the laurel was rescinded or Quinn simply had a conflict on his calendar.
A representative for the Community of Sant'Egidio could not be reached for comment.
Reams of private