No joke: Italian photographer publishes calendar of hot priests

The Local, a site covering Italian news in English, has a story about photograph Piero Pazzi, who has, for 11 years, produced an annual calendar depicting “hot priests”:

The Italian photographer behind a calendar of brooding priests told The Local his portraits are more about “informing people about the Vatican” and less about showcasing the most beautiful men within the Catholic Church.

It is officially called the Calendario Romano, or Roman Calendar. But on the streets of Rome, the annual line-up of strapping young men of the cloth is better known as the “hot priest calendar”.

Tourists can often be seen expressing dismay as they stumble across the calendar adorning gift stands close to the Vatican, before snatching a peek, handing over €10 to the vendor and scurrying off.

But the Venice-based photographer behind the calendar, Piero Pazzi, insists the portraits are purely intended to promote the Eternal City and inform visitors about the Vatican.

Yeah—who’s gonna believe that?

They are all genuine priests, usually snapped in Rome during Holy Week, he tells The Local.  He also travels to Seville to capture clergymen during the Spanish city’s Holy Week procession.

If you hunger for this kind of stuff, here are Mr. September and Mr. December (or should I say “Father September and Father December”). You can see the whole calendar here.

And remember, these guys are celibate.

Mr. September

Deember

~

86 Comments

  1. gbjames
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    sub, dude.

  2. Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    In the second photo here, the priest is holding a book about the streets of Rome… I wonder what he was looking for… ;)

    • Jesper Both Pedersen
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      The orphanage?

      • Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:36 am | Permalink

        Bordellos?

        The best gay bars?

      • Dave
        Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:36 am | Permalink

        After the revelations (?) of child rape in that organization, nothing can be discounted!

        • Kevin
          Posted December 30, 2013 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

          Nothing can be discounted from the Catholic Church, for all time.

  3. Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Metroasceticism.

  4. Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    “And remember, these guys are celibate.”

    Yea, right.

    As you say, “Who’s gonna’ believe that?”

    • Jeffery
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

      If someone believes in the literal truth of the Babble, even the watered-down Catholic version, they’ll believe anything!

  5. Dave
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    “… insists the portraits are purely intended to promote the Eternal City and inform visitors about the Vatican.”

    Wouldn’t photos of the actual VATICAN do a better job of that?

    • Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:05 am | Permalink

      Just as with the White House, the term applies equally well to the officials currently there as it does to the building itself.

      This is most commonly seen when the press reports on press releases issued by either, but it’s also not at all uncommon for the press to report on the mood of either.

      You’ll find similar usage for #10 Downing Street, the Kremlin, etc.

      Cheers,

      b&

      • Dave
        Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:18 am | Permalink

        Yes, but used in that sense, it does not refer to your average Joe Priest, rather, the governing body. Still, a photo of an administrative assistant doesn’t tell me squat about the White House.

        • Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:35 am | Permalink

          It would, if it was devoted to asexual asceticism and yet a disproportionate number were pinup models.

          And I think most administrators would tell you that the people they surround themselves with represent a great deal about themselves. After all, it’s the staff who actually does things — and, at such high a level, they’re generally setting a great deal of policy, themselves, even if nominally subject to oversight.

          Yes, even the administrative assistants. Swift called them, “flappers,” and they’re some of the most powerful of all officials.

          Cheers,

          b&

      • Jiten
        Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        There is a word for that : synecdoche.

        • Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

          Thanks. I vaguely recollect having stumbled across that word sometime before, but clearly not often enough to have picked it up…we’ll see if it sticks this time….

          b&

        • Posted December 30, 2013 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

          …or “metonymy”. Although “synecdoche” is the best fit in this case. “Metonymy” applies to a wider range of linguistic circumstances.

          • Posted December 30, 2013 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

            Wait…no, I’m mistaken. “Metonymy” is the better fit, as it can refer simply to related items being used to represent each other in speech. “Synecdoche” is specifically a part representing the whole. So “White House” or “Vatican” being used to refer to the individuals contained therein is not synecdoche.

  6. bric
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    Doesn’t really compete with the (ever so slightly tongue-in cheek) Orthodox Calendar

    http://www.orthodox-calendar.com/preview2014/

    • Dave
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:39 am | Permalink

      NSFW warning next time please.

    • Robert Seidel
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      I actually expected something more like that when reading this post’s title.

  7. Ken Eck
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    I saw this calendar at a street vendor’s stand on a trip to Rome last year and almost fell down laughing. I regret not buying one for the sake of amusing friends.

    During the rest of the visit I gave more attention to the priests walking the streets both near the Vatican and elsewhere. I didn’t have the calendar to check for matches, but I was struck by the number who were young and relatively handsome. I suspect good looks may really improve the odds of being placed in a post close to the Vatican.

  8. Richard Olson
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Glad my worry that I would scroll down to photo’s of priest’s in briefs was unfounded. I was already thinking following this, next there’ll be calendar’s with pic’s of Elders clad only in their magic underwear displayed for sale in stores all around Temple Square.

  9. Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    Jerry shows impeccable taste – the two you picked out are definitely the cutest!

  10. Filippo
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    ” . . . told The Local his portraits are more about “informing people about the Vatican” and less about showcasing the most beautiful men within the Catholic Church.”

    I’ll treat that claim half-way seriously when a calendar featuring nuns, with their hair shaken loose and visible, is similarly produced.

    • Torbjörn Larsson, OM
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      That’s what we want to see from that sect, less cover up and more oh’nun-ism.

  11. Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Of course they celibate. I bet they celibate all night long in Rome — and know just the right hangouts for that sort of thing.

    Cheers,

    b&

    • Dave
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      Celibate! Celibate!! Dance to the mu – sic.

      • gravityfly
        Posted December 30, 2013 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

        So bring your good times, and your laughter too

        We gonna celibate your party with you

        Celibate good times,come on!

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted December 30, 2013 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          Funny but the ear worm is awful. Make it stop! Make it stop!

          • Posted December 30, 2013 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

            Okay. But remember: you asked for it!

            b&

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted December 30, 2013 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

              Nooooooo! Also, This stupid song haunts me. Those in Ontario will sympathize.

              • Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

                The Marineland jingle! I grew to hate it; it was everywhere when I was at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. Every. Damn. Commercial beak. Sometimes more than once.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted December 31, 2013 at 7:04 am | Permalink

                Yes, it’s horrible & it’s still almost just as prevalent even today!

              • Posted December 31, 2013 at 6:53 am | Permalink

                Must admit that one’s new to me. I can understand how it could be really obnoxious, but, with a single exposure, it doesn’t really do anything.

                b&

              • Posted December 31, 2013 at 7:58 am | Permalink

                It’ll take repeated unbidden viewings.

                It’s no more annoying than any other jingle. I think the aggressiveness of their spring/summer campaigns rubbed me the wrong way. You’d see it four times in ten minutes! Enough already!

                And it’s not clever or funny or anything like that.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted December 31, 2013 at 8:02 am | Permalink

                It somehow wiggles itself into your brain. It’s horrible. I think this is what they force you to listen to in hell!

              • Posted December 31, 2013 at 8:56 am | Permalink

                …and I thought Ontario was actually a rather nice place….

                b&

              • Posted December 31, 2013 at 9:04 am | Permalink

                Oh, I’m sure Ontario is wonderful. It’s just that place I know in Ontario…

                (joking aside, I’m sure ML is a very nice amusement park)

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted December 31, 2013 at 11:20 am | Permalink

                Oh great, that one phrase made the whole song come back!

              • Posted December 31, 2013 at 9:08 am | Permalink

                (the new ML jingle begins w those words: “there’s a place I know in…”)

  12. Matt Bowman
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Warning! masturbating with this calendar is a mortal sin with no chance for repentance. ~ As always, with love, God

    • Kevin
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

      Masturbating without this calendar is a mortal sin…lose, lose.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted December 31, 2013 at 8:22 am | Permalink

      I’ll be in my bunk.

      My homage to the Firefly fans who will get this.

      • Filippo
        Posted December 31, 2013 at 8:30 am | Permalink

        Yea, verily, Shepherd, “Take me out to the dark . . . .”

  13. Steven Obrebski
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Dare I ask?? Is there a calendar with hot nuns??

    • Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      I’m sure that, if you ask Google, they’ll be glad to let you know the answer.

      …of course, they’ll also let the NSA know of your interests….

      b&

      • HaggisForBrains
        Posted December 31, 2013 at 3:39 am | Permalink

        I Googled “Hot Nuns calendar”, and now I definitely won’t get to heaven. This Nun of the Month site is definitely NSFW, and turn the volume down first.

        • Posted December 31, 2013 at 5:32 am | Permalink

          I posted that link yesterday in my second “Ooops” response to Steven (post N°23)
          :D

          • HaggisForBrains
            Posted December 31, 2013 at 7:58 am | Permalink

            Ooops! Sorry, Vera.

            • Posted January 1, 2014 at 9:45 am | Permalink

              No need to apologize, it is worth being linked to twice! Happy New Year!

  14. Dave
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    This calendar is not a complete waste, not by a long shot. Those photos will probably come in very handy one day as extant mug shots.

  15. Andrikzen
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Gives the true meaning to: “thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” (Psalm 23)

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, and the bible is full of “rod” references. Now I see this one completely differently: “I will chasten him with the rod of men” Samuel 7:14

      • Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

        You remember that famous scene in which the talking plant (on fire!) gives magic wand lessons to the reluctant hero?

        Well, what said hero does with his wand is completely heterosexual, as the song goes.

        Cheers,

        b&

    • Kevin
      Posted December 30, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

      The bible is all about rod puns and imagery.

    • Diane G.
      Posted December 31, 2013 at 12:53 am | Permalink

      I LOL-ed!

  16. Anita
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    ”And remember, these guys are celibate.”

    And who’s gonna believe that?

  17. Diana MacPherson
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    It always makes me sad when I see young people like this in the church. I want to tell them – No! Go have sex!

    I can’t decide if it’s them or me that I really feel sorry for. :D

    • Posted December 30, 2013 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

      Celibate, my ass! I’d like to interview them to see how the story really goes down.

      I have a friend who had a thing with a priest in high school. I forget if he was the one going there to say mass regularly, or if he was the one in charge of the after-school glee club.

  18. Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    This week the tv newspaper reported similar iniciatives of calendars,

    -one depicts sexy spanish mothers that want to finance their children school bus, see http://topassada.virgula.uol.com.br/2012/12/28/maes-fazem-calendario-sexy-para-contratar-servico-de-transporte-escolar/ ;
    -one depicts firemen that thought of offering the profits to a social cause, as Caritas, but it was not accepted; see http://www.ionline.pt/artigos/portugal/caritas-recusa-dinheiro-dos-bombeiros-setubal
    And it has been reported also about these same calendar that depicts the
    most beautiful priests (I think the Vatican doesn´t support the iniciative) but the calendar is quite popular in Italy.

    Nons are supposed to marry with Jesus Christ, isn´t it curious ?

  19. uglicoyote
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Reblogged this on The Road.

  20. Posted December 30, 2013 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    So where are the Hot Nones????!!!!

    • Posted December 30, 2013 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      The Hot Noms are in the kitchen!

    • Posted December 30, 2013 at 10:46 pm | Permalink

      If you’re referring to the religious affiliation category on many polls, there’s one typing this comment!

      *rim shot*

      • Diane G.
        Posted December 31, 2013 at 12:54 am | Permalink

        :D

  21. Posted December 30, 2013 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    I seem to remember that originally, celibacy for priests was not really abstinence from sex but abstinence from marriage so that there would not be spouses and children to inherit dead priests’ possessions, properties and money which would then go straight to the Church (and enrich it). The French word for bachelor (unmarried man or woman) is “célibataire”, from “célibat” [celibacy in English] – see http://www.linternaute.com/dictionnaire/fr/definition/celibat/). Since then, it seems to have included chastity.

    There is a French joke: Two old priests are discussing the big changes in the Church resulting from the various synods. One of the priests says to the other: “Soon they will allow us priests to marry!”, and the other priest responds “I don’t think we will see this in our lifetimes, but our children surely will!”

  22. Posted December 30, 2013 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    “…the portraits are purely intended to promote the Eternal City and inform visitors about the Vatican.”

    Pull the other one! [Actually, please don't.]

  23. Steven Obrebski
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    So no one has come up with a hot nun calendar.
    How about a hot penguin calendar??

  24. kansaskitty
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    Back in my late, but not great, Catholic days, we had a young, really good looking parish priest that we girls called Father What-a-Waste!

  25. Posted December 30, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    The hats in photos 8 and 10 don’t work.

  26. Posted December 30, 2013 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    A man walking through a Catholic neighborhood turns a corner and sees a small boy sobbing his eyes out. “My goodness!”, exclaims the man. “Whatever is the problem, young lad?”

    “My mum died this morning”, the boy says, between sobs.

    “Oh my poor, poor boy… that’s just terrible… would you like me to call a priest?”

    “Not really”, says the boy, “I really cannot think of sex at a time like this.”

  27. artsmyth
    Posted December 30, 2013 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    Are any of the priests photographed in the missionary position?

  28. Vicki
    Posted December 31, 2013 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    Some men have a kink for “virginity,” for the idea of being a woman’s first lover. Maybe this is selling to people who want the male equivalent.

    Sure, lots of us here are assuming that those priests aren’t celibate, certainly that not all of them are: but someone who wants to believe the guy s/he is wanking over is a virgin might choose a photo of a priest rather than one of a boy band.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted December 31, 2013 at 11:37 am | Permalink

      Ugh, I don’t think too many women would want that. I think they fantasize over these men in the same way my friend fantasizes over John Barrowman – that he’s straight and loves only her. :)

  29. gravelinspector-Aidan
    Posted December 31, 2013 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    I shall have to get a copy of that calendar. I have several friends who are, to use their self description, rampant screaming queens. They will get so … excited by that.

    • Diane G.
      Posted December 31, 2013 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

      Glad I’m not the only one who thinks this calendar is totally aimed at the gay market.

      • Filippo
        Posted January 1, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

        If the calendar is aimed at the gay market, then the photographer and/or publisher are not being totally forthright with the RCC hierarchy, eh?

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted January 1, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

        It may not have been deliberately aimed there, but as sure as … errr … I’m not going to try to unscramble the relevant metaphors from the irrelevant ones … there are priestly stud muffins going up on bedroom (or toilet) walls around the world as I type.
        It’s a way of getting their own back.

  30. Dominic
    Posted January 2, 2014 at 2:52 am | Permalink

    Hot for Jesus?!


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