The hacking group Anonymous has taken down the Vatican website, saying it was targeting the "corrupt" Catholic Church.
The cyber attack came a day after a high-profile bust of the group's alleged leaders.
"Anonymous decided today to besiege your site in response to the doctrine, to the liturgies, to the absurd and anachronistic concepts that your for-profit organisation spreads around the world," the hackers said in a statement.
"This attack is not against the Christian religion or the faithful around the world but against the corrupt Roman Apostolic Church," said the group in a statement posted on the Italian-language version of the Anonymous website.
Aside from taking down www.vatican.va, the hacking group also claimed responsibility for attacking several Vatican-related sites including that of its newspaper.
Anonymous tried and failed to attack the Vatican website last year.
Five alleged computer hackers in Britain, Ireland and the US were charged yesterday after a leader of the group became an FBI informant.
The charges against alleged members of Anonymous, Lulz Security and other international hacking groups were given in indictments at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.
The indictments cover some of the most notorious hacking incidents of the past several years, including those against Sony Pictures Entertainment, private intelligence firm Stratfor and computer security firm HBGary.