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Still more news leaks: airing of confidential documents bedevils Vatican

Catholic World News - February 15, 2012

Just a day after the director of the Vatican press office released an unusual statement responding to leaked internal documents, the release of still more confidential information added to the Vatican’s embarrassment.

The most recent leaks, published by Il Fatto Quotidiano, included a memo in which Cardinal Attilio Nicora, the head of the Vatican’s newly created Financial Information Authority, complained that the recent changes in Vatican rules for financial transfers may not go far enough to satisfy the concerns of Italian bank regulators. Cardinal Nicora said that loopholes in the Vatican’s regulations could “create serious alarm in the international community, as well as among international anti-money laundering organizations.”

Cardinal Nicora’s worries--expressed in a memo that was addressed to both the head of the Vatican bank and the Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone—are particularly damaging because the Vatican has been struggling to fend off reports of financial mismanagement. The new leaks also renew concerns that Cardinal Bertone is facing serious internal opposition among Vatican officials.

Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Vatican press office, had decried earlier leaks in a February 14 statement. "There is something very sad in the fact that documents are dishonestly passed from the inside to the outside in order to create confusion,” he said. The Vatican spokesman denied that the leaks are evidence of an escalating conflict within the Vatican, which some Italian journalists have characterized as a “mutiny of the monsignors.”

The Vatican newspaper, in a February 14 article about the 30 years that Pope Benedict XVI has spent at the Vatican, mentioned that the Pontiff “is not stopped by wolves.” When asked whether the “wolves” in question included those who had leaked documents, one anonymous “senior Vatican official” told the Reuters news service: “They certainly are not boy scouts.”

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  • Posted by: John J Plick - Feb. 15, 2012 8:22 PM ET USA

    What is truly scandalous is the small faith in God here. If the complaints are groundless, God will be the vindicator. If not, the concerned parties should repent.

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