This, if it is indeed true, will be quite momentous. Lombardi has been running the Holy See Press Office for nearly a decade — not always with alacrity and grace. His ‘howlers’ drove me nuts. It really will be a case of GROBR — Good Riddance of Bad Rubbish. But I won’t believe it until I actually see a Press Release stating that he has left. Lombardi at times made Niccolò Machiavelli look like he was Pope John XXIII! I have been convinced that Lombardi has ‘compromising’ photographs of the popes. To I that is the ONLY explanation why he has not been kicked way across the Tiber.
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It has happened before, as on July 19, 2010, when Vatican Radio, gave me credit for determining that Pope Benedict XVI (#266) had become the 7th oldest pope. But, it is always kind of special, especially if you are a part-time papal historian living in the sticks in New Hampshire, to be cited by the Vatican media.
So it kind of made my day when I received an e-mail from Rome saying that: ‘you are famous … once more’.
It has been an interesting month. The Holy See Press Office requested a copy of my book ‘The Next Pope 2011‘ for their Press Library. Last week I had an e-mail to say that they received the copy. Many people had told me that my book would not be welcome at the Vatican because it is about the ‘taboo’ topic of the ‘Next Pope’. Right now I know of at least two copies at the Vatican. As another Italian friend, this one from Tuscany, pointed out: ‘You have now conquered a little bit of immortality. They will keep records of your book for at least 200 years’.
Here is a link to the Rome Reports video and article.