Scalfari phoned Pope Francis' residence at the Vatican, and told Monsignor Alfred Xuereb, the Pope's particular secretary, that he would publish the letter he had received, and did so Sept. 11.
The letter was published on La Repubblica Sep. 11 and Pope Francis then called Scalfari Sept. 20, and arranged a meeting for them, to be held Sept. 24, in the afternoon.
Scalfari said that at the end of the 80 minute conversation, he asked Pope Francis permission to report the conversation. The Pope agreed, and Scalfari offered to send him the text before its publication.
According to Scalfari, the Pope told him not to "waste time" in sending him the text, saying, "I trust you."
Scalfari said he nevertheless sent his text of the conversation to the Vatican on Sept. 29, together with an accompanying letter.
In the letter, he reportedly wrote: "I must explain that I wrote up our conversation in order to let everybody understand our dialogue. Keep in mind that I did not report some things you told me, and that I report some things you did not tell me, which I wanted to insert to let the reader understand who you are."
According to Scalfari, Monsignor Xuereb called him two days later, saying that Pope Francis had permitted its publication, and the text was subsequently published.
According to a Vatican source who spoke with CNA Nov. 19, the interview "had to be removed from the Vatican website since it did not report faithfully the Pope's words."
The source especially wanted to point out that "Pope Francis never referred to the Curia as a leprosy; he was making a more general assessment of the medieval courts. Pope Francis was very sorry that people in the curia felt uncomfortable with his words."
Andrea Gagliarducci is an Italian journalist for Catholic News Agency and Vatican analyst for ACI Stampa. He is a contributor to the National Catholic Register.