Controversial Spanish bishop Xavier Novell Goma officially stripped of powers

by Deborah Cater
Novell Goma and wife leave the court

Xavier Novell Goma was Spain’s youngest bishop before stepping down to marry an author of satanic erotica. He was also a noted conservative.

As we reported in September, Xavier Novell Goma of Solsona, opponent of abortion, proponent of homogenisation, and expert in exorcism stepped down to marry an author of satanic erotica.

This Saturday, the Church officially stripped him of his powers as a bishop at a conference. He will no longer be able to administer the sacrament, among other duties.

“As is publicly known, Bishop Xavier Novell Goma, bishop emeritus of Solsona, has contracted a civil marriage with Ms Silvia Caballol, on 22 November, 2021 in the town of Suria, in the province of Barcelona,” the conference wrote in the statement.

Any cleric attempting to get married, even if only civilly, is subject to suspension, the statement added.

nederlandse orthopeed

Retains title of bishop

The churchman will retain his title as a bishop. However, he will not be allowed to  carry out any of the roles associated with the post. “Any teaching activity, both in public and private, is prohibited,” the statement said.

Novell Goma became Spain’s youngest bishop when appointed to Solsona in 2010 aged 41. He was a highly regarded conservative who reportedly endorsed gay conversion therapy and practised exorcisms. He also supported Catalan independence.

Fell in love with an author

Novell Goma stepped down in August this year citing personal reasons. The scandal hit the headlines when the bishop’s relationship with Caballol became known publicly. She has released titles such as  The Hell of Gabriel’s Lust.

At the time, Novell was quoted by website Religión Digital as saying “I have fallen in love and want to do things properly.”

Novell is now prohibited “from exercising all the rights and responsibilities inherent in the episcopal function”, said the conference, which did not rule out “other possible consequences”.

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