Photo Gallery Germany's Enigmatic Fake Bishop

The fake bishop who gatecrashed a meeting of cardinals in the Vatican on Monday is no stranger to public stunts, but rarely gives interviews. Is he a joker, a church critic or a thwarted cleric?
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All smiles -- "Bishop" Ralph Napierski of Berlin shaking hands on Monday with an apparently oblivious Cardinal Sergio Sebiastiana, who had arrived at the Vatican for talks ahead of a conclave to elect a new pope after stepped down. Napierski was marched out by members of the Swiss Guard. Maybe his sneakers gave him away.

Foto: VINCENZO PINTO/ AFP
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Here's a screenshot from Napierski's website showing him in a priest outfit in front of dildos at the "Venus" erotica trade fair in Berlin. The caption underneath reads: "Technical products for more sexual freedom."

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It's hard to say what Napierski really is: a joker, a church critic or simply an eccentric with strong leanings towards esotericism. In September 2011, he spoke to Cologne-based tabloid Express about sadomoasochism in the Catholic church and explained why he visits erotic trade fairs: "The church mustn't make sex a taboo. That's just what leads to secrecy and the consumption of pornography right up to Internet pornography addiction."

Foto: VINCENZO PINTO/ AFP