A bishop caused quite a stir in Spain for deciding to leave the Catholic church after he fell for a divorced psychologist who is also an author of satanic erotic fiction.
Yes, you read that right.
Xavier Novell, Bishop of Solsona—which is in the north-eastern region of Catalonia–was once Spain's youngest bishop at 41 to be appointed to the country's Catholic church in 2010.
Since then, he has become notorious for apparently carrying out exorcisms and supporting gay conversion therapy and was among a minority of priests who continued to help facilitate such controversial practices.
But after falling for Silvia Caballol—who is known for penning the erotic trilogy, Amnesia and The Hell of Gabriel's Lust—Novell chose to leave the Roman Catholic Church with the Vatican's approval.
Various media in Spain also said Novell has met with the Pope before announcing his resignation.
The BBC News reported that the description from one of Caballol's books promised readers a:
"journey into sadism, madness and lust and a struggle between good and evil, God and Satan with a plot to shake one's values and religious beliefs."
Talking with the Catholic news site, Religión Digital, the former priest declared:
"I have fallen in love and want to do things properly."
Social media gave into temptation and mocked the former bishop's reason for leaving the church.
The bishop's departure was largely criticized by former colleagues, who told the media they believed Novell was possessed by demons.
One colleague said the situation was "not a problem of celibacy but rather of infestation."
Pink News said the same source also claimed Pope Francis urged Novell to have an exorcism to "free his troubled spirit," but the then-bishop had declined to do so.
The diocese weighed in on the controversy and said of Novell:
"corroboration or not of this story is a strictly personal matter for him alone."
Local media reported that the couple is happily living together in Manresa—which is the capital of the Comarca of Bages, approximately 31 miles from the municipality of Solsona.
Novell is currently unemployed but is seeking a job around Barcelona as an agronomist, the field specializing in agriculture in which they act as a go-between for farmers and crop researchers.