Inside the Vatican

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Inside the Vatican

Series 1 - Episode 1



A series on the Catholic Church’s HQ opens with a comedy moment: Liverpudlian archbishop Paul Gallagher, the Vatican’s equivalent of a foreign minister, shows us the view of St Peter’s from his window – and for some reason puts on an Abba CD: Summer Night City booms out over the opening titles.

There are more quirky details as we explore the corridors of Vatican City: a chorister admits that although he sings the Credo, he’s not sure he believes it; in a row of booths, interpreters prepare to translate the Pope’s sermon; workers in St Peter’s climb the vast canopy over the altar to give it a good dust with the Italian equivalent of Pledge.

But so far this is about the surface polish of what the doc calls “the Catholic Church’s biggest theatre of faith”. It’s about the stage management, not the substance.


A film crew gains exceptional access to Vatican, afforded a year to examine its inner workings. Cameras capture everyone including Pope Francis himself, his head of security, the nuns who cater for the homeless, the choristers of the Sistine Chapel, the papal gardener and the chief of the diplomatic corps to gain a unique and exclusive insight into the lives of those who live and work in this independent City State. The first of two programmes follows the build-up to Easter, when tens of thousands of pilgrims arrive and Pope Francis takes centre stage in the world's biggest theatre of faith.

Cast & Crew

Director Silvia Sacco
Executive Producer Nicolas Kent
Executive Producer Sam Hobkinson
Producer Silvia Sacco
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