Pope Francis: Show me the money!

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Pope Francis will not close the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR), commonly known as the Vatican bank, and has reaffirmed “the importance of the IOR’s mission for the good of the Catholic Church, the Holy See and the Vatican City State,” according to a statement from the Holy See Press Office.

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Editors note: Has anyone ever noticed the strange names given to many of the Vatican dicasteries? You might expect that type of thing from the likes of Fidel Castro or Joseph Stalin – but from the Vatican?

Cardinal Pell “kicked upstairs” in Vatican Bank political/financial deal

pellLet’s get real. The Vatican is a jurisdiction of 12 square miles in central Rome. Its annual budget is about 120 million euros — a fraction of the budget of, say, Melbourne City Council or the Sydney County Council.

Even the archdioceses of Sydney and Melbourne would dwarf the Vatican for assets, turnover and salaried employees (there are only 2000 to 3000 at last count at the Vatican). It’s a small enterprise. It has a bank that acts as a credit union, most of whose depositors are the Roman headquarters of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of religious congregations of priests, brothers and nuns.

What is significant about Pell’s appointment is that he isn’t an Italian but one who studied there, like many Australian students for the priesthood, in the 1960s. He knows the place but is not of the place.

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Details Emerge About the Vatican Homosexual scandal on top of the Vatican Bank Scandal

ROME, July 18, 2013 – “In the curia there is talk of a ‘gay lobby.’ And it is true, it’s there. Let’s see what we can do,” Francis said on June 6 to Latin American religious received in audience.

And again: “It is not easy. Here there are many of the pope’s ‘bosses’ with great seniority of service,” he confided a few days ago to his Argentine friend and former student Jorge Milia.

In effect, some of these ‘bosses’ have hatched against Jorge Mario Bergoglio the cruelest and most subtle deception since he was elected pope.

They kept in the dark important information that, if he had known it before, would have kept him from appointing Monsignor Battista Ricca “prelate” of the Institute for Works of Religion.

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Vatican banker: Economic crisis likely to keep getting worse.

A devout Catholic and father of five who used to be a director of Santander bank, Gotti Tedeschi has consistently said the underlying causes of the current economic crisis, particularly in Europe, is a decline in the birth rate.

The Western world’s population growth rate (zero percent, or two children per couple) has led to a profound change in the structure of society, with less productivity and an aging population, leading to the inability of governments to reduce taxes, he said.

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How the mighty have fallen: Vatican knuckles under to EU banking authority.

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Prosecutors in Rome on Wednesday (June 1) released $33 million (23 million euros) in Vatican funds that had been frozen last September pending an investigation for possible money laundering.

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“You see, young man, the age of the Church is past, in which he said, ‘Silver and gold have I none.’ To which Aquinas replied, “True, holy father, but the age is also past, in which he could say to a paralytic, ‘Rise up and walk.'”

Trouble with the Vatican Bank

With the trip to England, the Pope has stepped fully into the papacy. There were no major setbacks and he presented the Church as still the most dignified representative of humanity — and did so in the secular heart of the secular continent (stepping into the belly of the beast, so to speak, and leaving unwounded; indeed, with new and well-deserved respect). Thus far it is the high point of Benedict XVI’s pontificate, coming at a time when Church credibility in Europe is in crisis and to a region that has been of special cause to him. The British media admitted that Pope Benedict “succeeded in presenting himself as a lovable, elderly figure,” as one news service stated. “What the visit accomplished above all was to unify Catholics and humanize a pope who has so often been perceived as cold, aloof and authoritarian,” wrote Catherine Pepinster, editor of a Catholic newspaper called The Tablet.

It was a huge victory, the product of courage, which means it was the product of faith. A Crucifix he held even seemed to radiate. “This was a much more successful visit than the Roman Catholic hierarchy had dared to hope,” said the Daily Mail newspaper. “The crowds were larger than had been forecast, if not as big as they were when the charismatic Pope John Paul II came to this country 28 years ago.” The Sun added: “The pontiff’s visit proved much more substantial than anticipated.”

Upon his return, the Pope was met by what may or may not turn out to be another scandal — an investigation by Italian authorities of the Vatican bank’s chief and the impounding of $30 million of Vatican assets.

It is too early to tell if there is merit to the investigation or whether the Italian authorities and media are playing it up as a little taste of persecution (perhaps the devil’s response to the success in England). The bank chief, Ettore Gotti Edeschi, says it was all caused by an error in procedure: money transfers from one account to another that were not “money-laundering,” which is what authorities ostensibly are guarding against.

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Knights of Columbus leader named to Vatican bank supervisory panel

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VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The head of the Knights of Columbus has been named by Pope Benedict XVI to a five-member council that supervises the activities of the Vatican bank.

Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson, who heads the 1.7 million-member fraternal organization, was among three new council members announced by the Vatican Sept. 23.

“I am honored to have been selected to be a member of the board of superintendents of the Vatican’s Institute for Works of Religion (IOR),” Anderson said. “I hope that my experience in working with the Vatican on a variety of issues over the past decade, and my work in the business and financial sector — as Supreme Knight and Chief Executive Officer of the Knights of Columbus — will enable me to contribute to the success of the IOR’s many important initiatives.”

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