Vatican rejects Bulgarian envoy for writing 'homosexual act'

Vatican City, Aug 6 (IANS/AKI) The Vatican rejected the candidacy of a Bulgarian diplomat to become the next ambassador of his country because he is the author of a best-selling novel containing a homosexual act, Italy's La Republica newspaper reported.

Kiril Maritchov Jr.'s rejection in May was "punishment" for a scene written by the married father of two in his 2005 book "The Fugitive's Road".

The book deals with migration from eastern Europe to Italy and includes a scene dealing with a male character paying another man for sex. It topped the best-selling lists in his home country, the daily said.

Maritchov, a 36-year-old lawyer and writer, is the son of a popular Bulgarian rock musician and the grandson of Kiril Marichkov, who was ambassador to the Vatican between 1993 and 1997, reported Vatican Insider, a news agency owned by Italy's La Stampa daily that tracks Vatican affairs.

The rejection of Maritchov's diplomatic credentials has strained relations between the Vatican and Bulgaria even with Maritchov's sterling government references.

The book's ending, in which the protagonist confesses all his sins to god and pleads for his eternal compassion, also did little to put Maritchov in the Pope's good graces.

--IANS/AKI

pm/vt