Pro-LGBT Group Oversees Vatican Website Overhaul

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by Juliana Freitag  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  January 18, 2018   

Head of Vatican Communications has close ties to LGBT world

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VATICAN CITY (ChurchMilitant.com) - The overhaul behind Vatican media is being led by a company heavily into LGBT activism, and the Vatican official in charge of the redesign is strong links to the LGBT community, including being directly responsible for nominating homosexualist Fr. James Martin as a Vatican communications consultant.
 
Spanish Catholic news portal Infovaticana broke the story revealing that the company behind the reform of all Vatican media, Accenture, is earnest in its pursuit of LGBT rights. Italian Catholic media picked up the story and raised questions regarding the connections of Msgr. Dario Edoardo Viganò (prefect of the Secretariat of Communication, in charge of the reforms) and the LGBT community. 
 
Accenture is a global consulting and strategy company well known for its LGBT activism. The group has received numerous awards, including being named Britain's most "gay-friendly employer" in 2013. A quick search on the internet finds a great number of pro-gay projects aided by the consultancy giant.
 
For example, a September webinar discussing LGBT Workplace Equality in Colombia (one of the main speakers was an Accenture Business Consultant involved in many of the company’s LGBT initiatives) described Colombia as a "country [that] has been increasingly lauded as one of the more progressive countries in Latin America. ... However, a strong influence of Catholic conservatism ... leaves open serious questions concerning the state of LGBT workplace equality."
 
All Vatican media independent channels are now integrated under the guidance of Accenture's editorial direction, headed solely by the all-powerful Msgr. Viganò. The Vatican Press (which includes historical newspaper L’Osservatore Romano) will be joining in January, cementing the fusion. A single multilingual editorial team will be working for the production of every type of content (written, audio, video, graphics), while also managing the Vatican's new Youtube, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
 
The launch of the VaticanNews multimedia portal "is just a side effect" of the reform, as Msgr. Viganò stated in an interview to Italian Newspaper Corriere della Sera.
 
"The reform is a new 'agnostic' system defined together with Accenture, not for a particular medium, but as an entirely new unitary management model of production," he explained.
 
When asked if the change was due because the old model didn't work anymore, he replied, "Reforms aren't launched because something doesn't work. They are done because the times change."
 
Reforms aren't launched because something doesn't work. They are done because the times change.
The Secretariat for Communication never requested bids for the project; in fact, the new dicastery went directly after Accenture. Athough Accenture has a reputation for being one of the best media consultancy firms in the world, Vatican insiders speculate Viganò's preference may not be entirely based on professional assessments.
 
A small hint comes, for example, from Famiglia Cristiana (a Catholic magazine founded in 1931 that has always been available in Italian parishes): They published an article in May 2017 praising Accenture's project "Youth in Action" (a contest focused on the United Nations' goals for the 2030 Agenda), even though it had no Catholic relevance. 
 
Francesco Agnoli, writing for La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana, defines Viganò as a "very mundane man, with a lot of unusual associations," reminding us that the prefect nominated Jesuit priest James Martin, widely known for his pro-LGBT activism, as advisor to the Secretariat of Communicatios.
 
Agnoli also points out that Viganò — the man now holding a powerful position that consolidates what were formerly the roles of several heads of departments — was also responsible for the "Disney-like" display of wildlife on St. Peter's facade on the opening of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy in 2015.
 
Vaticanista Marco Tosatti wrote a piece describing Viganò’s close relationship to LGBT radio icon Pierluigi Diaco (who recently celebrated a highly publicized civil union with his male partner), with whom Viganò has been partnering for daily radio broadcasts, sometimes from inside the museums of Vatican Radio. 
 
Agnoli also claims that word spread around the Vatican that the nomination of Msgr. Nunzio Galantino as secretary of the Italian Bishops' Conference was  Viganò's. Galantino — known as "the Pope's man" inside the Conference — has a reputation for heterodoxy and is remembered especially for his aversion to pro-family, Catholic groups that lobbied against gay civil unions bill.
 
Agnoli also mentions newspapers Il Tempo and Il Fatto Quotidiano, which in 2015 revealed that Krzysztof Charamsa (a longtime employee of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, who came out as actively gay in 2015) "was about to become a bishop, thanks to his network of relationships, which includes Msgr. Dario Viganò." 

 

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