And the lord commended the unjust steward, forasmuch as he had done wisely: for the children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light.
The Church has had trouble managing money since Judas was treasurer and helped himself to the contents of the purse. The Institute for the Works of Religion, universally known as the Vatican Bank, was founded in June of 1942 by Pope Pius XII. Since 1968 “scandal” and “Vatican Bank” have gone together like bread and butter. Pope Francis is trying to change that:
Pope Francis shook up the scandal-plagued Vatican bank on Wednesday, removing four of five cardinals from an oversight body in a break with the clerical financial establishment he inherited from his predecessor.
It was his latest move to get to grips with an institution that has often been an embarrassment for the Holy See and which he has vowed to either reform or close. The four cardinals were removed just 11 months into their five-year terms as commissioners, which began under former Pope Benedict, who resigned last February.
The new team includes two cardinals – Toronto’s Christopher Collins and Vienna’s Christoph Schoenborn – from relatively rich dioceses who have had extensive dealings with financial affairs. The others are Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s new secretary of state, who will be elevated to the rank of cardinal next month, and Santos Abril y Castillo, a Spaniard who is based in Rome and is a close friend of the pope’s.
The one holdover was French Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran. The four who were not re-confirmed included the former secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone. Commentators and some church officials blamed him for lax oversight that led to a spate of scandals during Benedict’s pontificate, including the leaking of some of the pope’s personal documents by Benedict’s butler.
Bertone has defended his record saying he was the victim of “anonymous accusations and rumour mongering”. Cardinal Domenico Calcagno, head of another Vatican financial department that Italian magistrates suspect of financial irregularities and which the Vatican has asked an outside firm to audit, was also removed.
Go here to read the rest. PopeWatch wishes the Pope well in this effort, but is not optimistic. High ecclesiastics, even when personally completely honest, seem to be incapable of keeping close rein on a large financial operation without the thieves coming out to play. Christ, as always, knew what He was doing when He chased the money changers from the Temple.