Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone

June 25, 2012

The Vatican Secretary of State blamed an ongoing scandal over leaked Vatican documents on unethical journalists and a spirit of hostility toward the Catholic Church.

“Many journalists play at imitating Dan Brown,” said Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, in an interview with the Italian magazine Famiglia Cristiana. “They continue to invent fables or repeat legends.”

Bertone made his remarks as Vatican judges were investigating leaks to Italian journalists of dozens of documents, including letters to the pope and encrypted cables from Vatican embassies around the world, several of which hint at power struggles among officials of the Holy See.

“The truth is that there is a malicious will to produce division” among the collaborators of Pope Benedict, he said.

The Catholic Church “is an unambiguous point of reference for innumerable persons and institutions around the world,” he said.

“For this reason some try to destabilize it, and shatter this rock, this 2,000-year-old institution that continues to carry out its proper mission of witness, reconciliation, justice, unity, solidarity.”

The cardinal likened the experience of the scandal, for the pope and Vatican officials, to that of the crucifixion.

Noting that the publication of private letters violates the Italian constitution’s guarantee of a right to privacy, Bertone lamented that stories of the Church’s extensive charitable works have been “intentionally ignored or erased” amid heavy press coverage of the scandal.