One of the most controversial Italian writers of the 1980s, Pier Vittorio Tondelli, who wrote extensively on homosexuality, returned to the Church shortly before dying of AIDS.
According to the Spanish daily “La Razon,” Tondelli, who was openly homosexual, was born in the Italian city of Corregio in 1955. According to Antonio Spadaro, an expert on the works of Tondelli, his reading of mystical literature and other religious writings always influenced him. For example, the main character of his book, “Separate Rooms,” Leo, “automatically looks for the Bible in the bookstore.”
Tondelli was fascinated with the works of Jewish mysticism, the Imitation of Christ, and the mystics like St. Teresa of Avila. “I love to look through them, to find and read stories, and the idea of holiness,” he wrote.
In 1989, the Italian writer said, “Everyone that has been raised in the bosom of a religion has his own religiosity. I have always tried to seek out not so much a discussion about the Catholic faith, but rather to express my own religiosity—without a doubt in the bosom of Christianity—which seeks out or questions its own positions, especially in confrontation with other authors.”
Speaking about chastity after his conversion, Tondelli called it “a mystic virtue for those who have chosen it and perhaps the most superhuman use of sexuality.”
A few days before dying, Tondelli read the Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, making a few notes in the margins, such as, “Literature does not bring salvation, never. Only love, faith and falling back into grace saves.”