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Pope overhauls commission of cardinals supervising Vatican bank

January 15, 2014

Pope Francis has thoroughly overhauled the commission of 5 cardinals who supervise the work of the Vatican bank, the Institute for Religious Works (IOR).

The Vatican announced on January 15 that the Pontiff has renewed the mandate of the supervisory commission, but replaced 4 of the 5 cardinals on that commission.

The new commission is composed of: Cardinal Santos Abril y Castello, the archpriest of the basilica of St. Mary Major; Cardinal Thomas Collins of Toronto; Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna; Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, the president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue; and Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State (who will become a cardinal at the February consistory). The Vatican did not indicate whether the Pope has appointed a chairman for the commission; a report published last week by the Italian daily Corriere della Sera said that Cardinal Abril y Castello would be given that post.

Last February, shortly before his resignation, Pope Benedict XVI had renewed the terms of 4 of the 5 cardinals then serving on the IOR commission. At the time, Vatican-watchers had been expecting a more extensive turnover, in light of the problems that had plagued the Vatican bank. Now Pope Francis has brought about the change, replacing 4 of the cardinals who had served less than 1 year of their proposed 5-year terms on the body.

Among the cardinals named by Pope Francis, only Cardinal Tauran had been appointed by Pope Benedict last year. The other members of the IOR commission, whose terms have now ended, were Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the former Secretary of State (whose place is now taken by his successor, Archbishop Parolin); Cardinal Domenico Calcagno, the president of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See; Cardinal Pedro Scherer of Sao Paolo; and Cardinal Telesphore Toppo of Ranchi, India.


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