Sorry, but that article was laced with nasty bits that had no basis in fact.
I see nothing in the news lately that hinted there might be a papal partnership. We can speculate as to why the outgoing pope will stay in the vatican but it would be just that. He is currently staying in an Italian estate outside the vatican but that is just a vacation. I suspect returning to Germany would be dangerous given the ongoing scandal.
There are a lot of awful things that can be said, and confirmed, about the former pope but being gay is not one of them. The description of the secretary sounded like some sort of gay wet dream. His work with Ratzinger goes back to the mid 1990's where he worked in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. This is where all the despicable stuff came out that protected the pedephile prists from excommunication or prosecution. For whatever reason, Ratzinger made him the vatican secretary in 2012. He probably knows more dirt than most but it's not unusual to see people carried along when the big cheese moves up the ladder. Given the oddness of the entire priestly experience, I'm really not surprised he might remain committed to Ratzinger even as he continues to perform his secretarial duties for the incoming pope. His committment is to both the man and the organization. Again, not something I have any profound respect for but it is understandable.
"This man – clearly in some kind of love with Ratzinger (and vice-versa) will now be working for the new Pope as secretary in the day and spending the nights with the Pope Emeritus. This is not the Vatican. It’s Melrose Place."
I don't much like being led around by the nose when I read. My tail starts to tingle when people tell me what to think. It sounds like the writer lives in a Melrose Place type universe. Not a fan of either the pope or the catholic church but this article was below the belt. It was also below any kind of respectable journalistic standard.
Well, if it will help you understand the source, Sullivan is Catholic and gay.
I was also disappointed in Sullivan for reading "gay love affair" into loyalty and devotion. I tried to get my aging parents to move in with me so I could give them better care in their decline. It's not that I had an affair with them, they were my parents. Similarly I could think of a handful of other people that I would do the same for, again, out of affection, loyalty, and honor. As for an aging pope, no family and unmarried, with only his staff to care for him, and a staff member who has dedicated himself to his boss and maybe friend, why not?
Sullivan may have some sort of inside track, but I doubt it. Even though I loathe the Catholic cabal. Juicy gossip about them is fun. But I see nothing to make this story believable.
I like Sullivan in many ways. He was the first to make me think about marriage equality, 25 years ago. He taught me to think of myself as worthy of the same rights and responsibilities as anyone else. His early essay on Obama made me think Obama was a viable candidate - long before I read the same from anyone else. But on this, I think he over reached.