Papal visit and Christmas pardon for Paolo Gabriele
(Vatican Radio) On Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI visited his former-Butler Paolo Gabriele
in the Vatican prison to personally tell him that he is forgiven and pardoned for
his crimes. Emer McCarthy reports:
Holy See Press
Office director, Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., informed journalists: “This morning the
Holy Father Benedict XVI visited Paolo Gabriele in prison in order to confirm his
forgiveness and to inform him personally of his acceptance of Mr Gabriele's request
for pardon, thereby remitting the sentence passed against the latter. This constitutes
a paternal gesture towards a person with whom the Pope shared a relationship of daily
familiarity for many years.
Mr Gabriele was subsequently released from prison
and has returned home. Since he cannot resume his previous occupation or continue
to live in Vatican City, the Holy See, trusting in his sincere repentance, wishes
to offer him the possibility of returning to a serene family life”.
father of three, Paolo Gabriele was arrested May 23, 2012, after Vatican police found
papal documents in his apartment. He was convicted of aggravated theft by a Vatican
tribunal on Oct. 6 and had been serving his 18-month sentence in the Vatican Gendarme
Gabriele had handed most of the Holy Father’s private and
personal documents over to an Italian journalist who subsequently published them.