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Pope Francis names members of new Council for the Economy, appoints Cardinal Marx as coordinator

March 10, 2014

Pope Francis has named the 15 members of the Council for the Economy, a new body whose creation he announced in his recent motu proprio Fidelis et Dispensator Prudens.

The Council for the Economy, according to the document, is entrusted with the task of “supervising economic management and supervising the structures and the administrative and financial activities of the dicasteries of the Roman Curia, of the institutions connected to the Holy See, and of Vatican City State.”

Pope Francis has named Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich and Freising as the coordinator of the Council. Cardinal Marx is among the eight prelates who serve on the Council of Cardinals, which assists the Pope in the governance of the universal Church and in the reform of the Roman Curia.

Other prelates who will serve on the Council for the Economy are Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston; Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier of Durban, South Africa; Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera of Mexico City; Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne of Lima; Cardinal Jean-Pierre Ricard of Bordeaux, France; Cardinal John Tong Hon of Hong Kong; and Cardinal Agostino Vallini, vicar general of Rome. The latter six prelates served on the 15-member Council of Cardinals for the Study of Economic and Administrative Problems of the Holy See, which no longer exists.

Pope Francis also appointed seven lay members of the new Council for the Economy:

  • Joseph F.X. Zahra, former director of the Central Bank of Malta
  • Jean-Baptiste de Franssu, former president of the European Fund and Asset Management Association
  • John F. Kyle, retired vice president of Imperial Oil Limited in Canada
  • Enrique Llano Cueto, an economist from the University of Madrid
  • Jochen Messemer, former partner of McKinsey & Company and board chairman of Ergo International Ltd.
  • Francesco Vermiglio, professor of business administration at the University of Messina
  • George Yeo, who has served as Singapore’s Minister of State for Finance

The Council for the Economy is related to, but distinct from, the new Secretariat for the Economy, which is entrusted with the audit, economic supervision, policies, procedures, and human resources of the dicasteries of the Roman Curia, of the institutions connected to the Holy See, and of Vatican City State. The cardinal prefect of the new Secretariat for the Economy is Cardinal George Pell; the secretary general is Msgr. Alfred Xuereb, who served as Pope Benedict’s second secretary and Pope Francis’s first secretary.

Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Holy See Press Office, said in a statement that “the relations between the Council and the Secretariat for the Economy will be defined by the statutes, and in any case the Council is to be understood as a body with its own authority for policy decisions, not merely an advisory organ of the Secretariat for the Economy.”


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  • Posted by: abc - Mar. 10, 2014 8:45 PM ET USA

    The pope is selecting for financial bodies people who really understand money: Marx (Church Tax), the guy from Opus Dei, the other guy from the Legionnaires... I am afraid this is risky, but nobody can deny that these are the money-savvy guys in the Church.

  • Posted by: normnuke - Mar. 10, 2014 11:08 AM ET USA

    Cardinal Marx??!! Who says the world isn't going to a hand-cart?

  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Mar. 10, 2014 10:30 AM ET USA

    I am very pleased to see Cardinal Marx appointed coordinator of this Council for the Economy; it is a very encouraging sign. I am sure partisans of Rush Limbaugh and his brand of "conservatism" will not agree, but their track record in things economic has been far from stellar so far this century.