Male Gaze: Gorgeous George, the Pope’s Right-Hand Man

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Gorgeous George's Italian Vanity Fair cover. Photo: Vanity Fair

Archbishop Georg Gänswein’s face is no longer hidden behind the Vatican’s walls, or even overshadowed by his high-profile employer, Pope Benedict XVI. The pope’s chief personal secretary, who’s frequently seen ambling alongside the papa, is the cover boy of Italian Vanity Fair’s February issue. The cover line "Padre Georg: It’s not a sin to be beautiful” is aptly written below his icy-blue eyes. Italians have long adored the 56-year-old German clergyman, whom they've christened “Gorgeous George” and even “The George Clooney of St. Peter's*"; in 2007, Donatella Versace was so inspired by Gänswein's looks and "austerity" that she created a priestly chic menswear collection. But really, who wouldn't fall for those wizened eyes, warm smile, and silver fox hair, which are attractive even with a clerical collar in full view?

*St. Peter's Basilica, of course, not St. Petersburg