An Italian industrialist tried to curry favor by donating $100,000 worth of truffles. A Mercedes-Benz executive hoped for an audience to suggest improvements to the Popemobile. But in the final years of the papacy of Benedict XVI, others sent very different messages, too, desperate for the pope’s ear.
A cardinal warned that the pope’s top administrator was undermining his papacy. And two church benefactors sounded an alarm that the Vatican’s governing hierarchy, known as the Roman Curia, was riddled with intrigue.
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