Pope Francis has admitted for the first time that there is a "gay lobby" within the Curia, the powerful governing body of the Roman Catholic Church.
"In the Curia ... there are holy people. But there also is a stream of corruption. The 'gay lobby' is mentioned, and it is true, it is there. We need to see what we can do," he said.
He is said to have made the remarks in an audience with senior monks and nuns from Latin America last week.
Last year, Italian newspaper La Repubblica said a report for the Pope Benedict XVI referred to a faction "united by sexual orientation".
It said some officials had been subjected to "external influence" by those with whom they had links of a "worldly nature", a suggestion that the gay officials might have been blackmailed.
- Daily Mail