|Ralph Napierski is an enigma. The fake bishop who snuck into a meeting of cardinals in the Vatican this week is no stranger to public stunts -- including sex toy advocacy -- but rarely gives interviews. Is he a joker, a church critic or a thwarted cleric?|
The New York Daily News reports: “Prankster Ralph Napierski donned a short cassock, ‘an unusual’ cross necklace, and a purple sash that was actually a scarf, according to Italy’s Gazzetta del Sud. Instead of a skullcap he wore a black fedora. He told reporters his name was ‘Basilius,’ and a member of the ‘Corpus Dei,’ a German church described online as a ‘Catholic Order after episcopal law.’” He never made it past the Sistine Chapel. If history is any indicator, those turned away from the Sistine Chapel—due to reasons as diverse as impersonating a bishop or refusing to wear sleeves because it’s deathly hot in Rome in July—travel alone via cab back to the hotel and watch West Wing DVDs all day. So that answers the un-asked question of what’s next for Ralph Napierski, the James O’Keefe of Catholicism.
USA Today adds the amusing detail that Napierski was “accompanied by a small entourage of fake priest assistants,” which, (another) true story, is how a friend of ours gained entrance to Bungalow 8. In this case, the imposter was not a fake priest but fake “Haley Joel Osment” and your blogger and others were his fake celebrity assistants. Could Haley Joel Osment have breached the Sistine Chapel? You know, if this were 2006, maybe.