On anti-homophobia row, Vatican PR once again defuses bomb after it goes off

ROME – In response to a burgeoning controversy this week over the Vatican’s novel protest of a draft anti-homophobia law in Italy, Italian Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State, said Thursday the goal of the move wasn’t to interfere with Italy’s internal politics but rather to head off a potential problem. Instead of waiting until the measure, known here as the “Zan bill” for the openly gay legislator who introduced it, was formally adopted, Parolin said the idea was to signal potential glitches so they can be solved before creating diplomatic, legal and even constitutional headaches, mostly related to religious freedom. So far. So good. The problem is that from a communications point of view, the Vatican didn’t practice what Parolin was preaching, i.e., getting ahead of a potential problem. It was always written in the stars that their note verbale, or diplomatic communique, on the draft law would go public and make waves, yet Parolin used the same interview to insist the note was “certainly not to be published” and seemed to suggest he was surprised when it leaked.

On anti-homophobia row, Vatican PR once again defuses bomb after it goes off

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