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German bishops, Pope to confer on spending dispute in Limburg diocese

Catholic World News - October 11, 2013

The president of the German Catholic bishops’ conference has said that he will discuss the crisis in the Limburg diocese with Pope Francis during a meeting in Rome next week.

Archbishop Robert Zollitsch, who heads the German episcopal conference, said that the German hierarchy needs guidance in facing the “distressing situation” in Limburg, where a bishop faces charges of providing false testimony in an increasingly bitter public dispute over diocesan spending.

Prosecutors announced this week that they will ask for a court judgment against Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst, who allegedly filed false affidavits after being accused of lavish spending. The bishop is under fire for investing over $40 million—several times the original estimated cost—in a new diocesan complex. Archbishop Zollitsch told reporters that he was "as surprised at the €31 million figure as you are."

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