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Rent the Sistine Chapel for Your Next Party

Henri Neuendorf, Friday, October 17, 2014

It is believed to be the first time the Sistine Chapel has been rented out for a commercial event.

Photo: Clayton Tang via Wikimedia Commons

The Catholic Church has agreed to rent out the Vatican's Sistine Chapel for a corporate event organized by Porsche, the Telegraph reports. The money raised by the event will be donated to charities supporting the poor and the homeless.

The event is part of an exclusive tour of Italy that is openly advertised on the luxury auto-manufacturer's website. It assures participants that they can look forward to “a magnificent concert in the Sistine Chapel," followed by a “gala dinner" in the Vatican Museums. With only 40 spots available, costing €5,000 ($6,400) each, the tour is set to raise €200,000 ($256,000) for charity. The Porsche tour is believed to be the first time the chapel has been rented out for a non-Vatican event.

Since his inauguration, Pope Francis has put significant emphasis on the plight of the poor and has gained a reputation for his pragmatic and forward-thinking interpretation of scripture. This latest move may indicate that he is prepared to capitalize on the Vatican's rich cultural heritage for the benefit of those in need.

Managing director of the Vatican Museums Monsignor Nicolini told journalists “It is an initiative which will support the Pope's charity projects. It is aimed at big companies which, through the payment of a fee, can contribute to charity activities."

However, he was quick to note that the chapel will not be openly available for rent going forward, making it clear that “the Sistine Chapel can never be rented because it is not a commercial place."

A spokeswoman for the Porsche travel club told the Telegraph “It's a one-off event and a once in a lifetime opportunity. It will be the highlight of the trip."