In an audience with The Latin American and Caribbean Confederation of Religious, Pope Francis is said to have revealed the existence of a gay lobby.
The organization of priests and nuns posted notes of their private meeting with the pope on its website.
"Truthfully, there are saintly people in the curia, but there is also a current of corruption, it's true," he said according to the Confederation. "There's talk of the 'gay lobby' and it's true it's there. We have to see what we can do about it."
As The New York Times reports, this is apparent confirmation of reports in Italian media that the Vatican denied in February.
The Times explains:
"In the days leading up to Pope Benedict XVI's resignation in February, the Italian news media were rife with reports of a 'gay lobby' influencing papal decision-making and Vatican policy through blackmail, and suggestions that the scandal had contributed to his decision to resign.
"The unsourced reports said details of the scandal were laid out in a secret dossier prepared for Benedict by three trusted cardinals who investigated the leaks of papal documents last year. Benedict left the dossier for Francis."
The confederation, known as CLAR, its Spanish acronym, apologized to the pope for releasing the document. The Associated Press reports the group said it was "greatly distressed" by the accidental release.
The AP adds that the Vatican said it had nothing to say about the report because the conversation happened during a private meeting.
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