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Bishop quits to marry erotic novelist: Scandal, celibacy debate and life for churchmen in love
12 September 2021 @ 18:59

A DIOCESE in Catalunya is in uproar after a Bishop of the Catholic Church announced he had given up his vocation to marry an author of erotic novels.

Bishop of Solsona, Xavier Novell (photo: Catalunya News Agency, or ACN)

Xavier Novell had created controversy in the past for admitting he 'frequently' practised exorcisms, spoke out in defence of conversion therapy for homosexuals, and supported his region's attempt at a referendum on independence, but this time, his polemical behaviour has not been slammed by the public – only by his former employers.

In a letter to the Diocese of Solsona three weeks ago, Novell explained his decision to give up his post of Bishop and leave the Church was due to 'strictly personal reasons', but it has only now been revealed that he had fallen in love with psychologist and fiction writer Silvia Caballol.

Sra Caballol's novels are erotic with a satanic twist – like a kind of vampire or devil-worship version of the Fifty Shades series – and titles highlighted in the Church press include Hell in Gabriel's Lust.

But a nun from the Dominican Republic interviewed on Spanish channel-four (La Cuatro) programme Todo es Mentira ('It's all lies'), Sister Lucía Caram, says she believes the real reason for Novell's departure is because 'the Pope is furious with him' for his very public and ultra-conservative declarations.

As well as the exorcism and support of Catalunya's secession referendum and conversion therapy, agricultural engineering graduate Novell – who became Spain's youngest Bishop when he took the post in 2010, aged 41 – has spoken out against abortion, even following rape; euthanasia, and same-sex marriage.

Back in 2017, he made the unfounded claim that homosexuality was 'caused' by 'not having a father figure' in the family, or directly condemning single mums or all-female parents.

“He's done a lot of damage to a lot of people,” Sister Caram said on the show.

A decade ago, Novell was asked what he would do if he fell in love, for real, and answered that if a woman 'awakened in him feelings of marital affection', he would go out of his way to make sure he never saw her again.

Divorced, former Muslim wife and sexologist...'living in sin' with Bishop

Catholic priests, Bishops and other members of the clergy cannot marry – unlike in most branches of Protestantism where women as well as men can be vicars or priests, can marry and have children, and even be divorced.

Catholic churchmen cannot marry or have romantic relationships, unlike in some other branches of Christianity 

Now, the Church in Spain is aflame since, not only has the Bishop left to get married, and to an erotic novelist to boot, but they are living together in Manresa (Barcelona) despite not yet having tied the knot, and Silvia Caballol is a divorcée.

The writer and practising psychologist, 38, spent several years living in Morocco as she was married to a man from the northern African country, a Muslim, and had two children with him.

She moved back to Barcelona after their divorce.

Silvia Caballol started publishing her novels back in 2015 - fiction which has been described as covering themes such as penitence and punishment, sado-masochism, madness, religious cults, psychopathy, lust, immortality and 'the raw battle between good and bad, between God and Satan, between the angels and the demons', all from a sexual point of view.

She has taken professional courses in sexology, Islam, Catholicism, yoga, and anti-stress techniques.



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