Another Vatican Gay Sex Scandal Involving Prelate, Swiss Army Officer Greets Pope Francis on His Return to Vatican (VIDEOS & PHOTO)

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By Vittorio Hernandez | July 29, 2013 9:39 AM EST

Still high from the success of his trip to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, leading the 15th international World Youth Day, Pope Francis goes back to facing the many problems facing Vatican City. Over the weekend, another gay sex scandal involving a prelate and a Swiss Army officer erupted, surely needing the pontiff's immediate attention even before he could unpack his bags.

The Italian weekly L'Espressio reported that a prelate appointed by the pope to a key position in the embattled Vatican Bank, Monsignor Battista Rica, allegedly had a gay affair with a Captain Patrick Haari in 1999 while he was assigned at the Vatican embassy in Montevideo, Uruguay.

The report, written by Sandro Magister, a Vatican expert, said that the prelate provided accommodations and a pay check for Mr Haari. Besides the gay love affairs, Mr Ricca also was once beaten badly after cruising the city's gay hangouts and was stuck in an elevator with a young male prostitute he invited to the embassy for a night.

Someone had apparently kept these bad records from the eyes of the pope, who was elected only in March 2013, that Mr Ricca even got an appointment in the Vatican Bank. Prior to his latest appointment, Mr Ricca also served as director of Santa Martha residence where Pope Francis currently lives.

Mr Magister explained that Mr Ricca's holding several top positions in the Holy See "allowed him to weave an intricate network of relationships with the highest levels of the Catholic hierarchy all over the world."

He added the removal of records of previous scandals involving Mr Ricca is an example of the monstrous gay lobby that continues to function at the Vatican despite efforts of the pope to cleanse the seat of the Roman Catholic faith.

Vatican spokesman Frederico Lombardi said the allegations against the prelate are not credible, but Mr Magister insisted that the charges against Mr Ricca were confirmed by a number of bishops, priests and lay people in Uruguay.

The scandal places now the ball on the court of Pope Francis on how he would address the same issue that had weighed down the eight-year reign of his predecessor.

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