The trial of Pope Benedict's former butler has been opened and adjourned. Paolo Gabriele was arrested in May and charged with illegal possession of secret documents following embarrassing leaks that exposed alleged corruption within the Vatican.
According to Al Jazeera, the butler pulled off the greatest breach of Vatican security in memory. Appearing before a tribunal in Vatican City, Gabriele, a father of three, did not dispute his own guilt. Many wonder, however, if he he acted alone.
Al Jazeera reports that court-appointed specialists described Gabriele as "frustrated and enraged," but that he characterized himself as "an agent of the Holy Spirit on a mission to root out evil and corruption." Gabriele is accused of leaking Vatican documents to journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi, who published them in His Holiness: The Secret Papers of Benedict XVI.
The question of a wider conspiracy may not be answered in the trial, the leading judge said. The case is limited to the theft of documents and could be decided by the end of next week. Gabriele faces imprisonment if found guilty.
Onlookers think that if the Benedict XVI forgives Gabriele, it will reflect the pope's "personal gentleness" and show the Church's "holiness."