The futile quest for Vatican transparency
In a wide-ranging interview, Reuters reports, Pope Francis “was concerned that ‘there is no transparency’ in the Vatican’s real-estate holdings...”
The Vatican’s real-estate holdings are managed by APSA: the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See.
“We have to move ahead with transparency, and that depends on APSA,” the Pope told Reuters.
Do you see the problem here? The agency crucial to the quest for transparency is itself a model of non-transparency.
And there’s a second problem. Pope Francis established the Secretariat for the Economy to bring transparency to Vatican finances. But over time, the powers of the Secretariat have been diminished, while those of APSA have increased. Now even the Pope says that APSA—not the hamstrung Secretariat—is the key to transparency. And again, in the eyes of the Holy Father himself, APSA is not transparent.
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