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Papal Foundation re-evaluating its role, relationship with Holy See

March 23, 2018

The Papal Foundation has announced that its members will not have their annual papal audience, as the charitable group completes a process of “re-evaluation of its mission, its approach to grant giving and its relationship with the Holy See.’

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The Papal Foundation, consisting of wealthy donors who have provided support for Vatican initiatives in the Third World, has traditionally made an annual pilgrimage to Rome, culminating in a papal audience. But the foundation encountered an uncharacteristic controversy earlier this year, when members objected to a $25 million grant to a troubled Roman hospital. The grant—which was an unusually large one for the Papal Foundation, and broke from the pattern of aid to the poor in developing nations—was reportedly approved by the foundation’s executives at the explicit request of Pope Francis.

Because of the internal dispute over that grant, the Papal Foundation is now reconsidering its role, the group announced, and the annual papal audience will not be held until that process is completed.

In announcing this internal review, the Papal Foundation expressed dismay about “inaccurate and misleading information” that had circulated regarding the $25 million grant, “creating confusion and unnecessary division” within the group.


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  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Mar. 24, 2018 10:34 AM ET USA

    "...inaccurate and misleading information...creating confusion and unnecessary division." It is now not only the Vatican, the episcopate, the presbytery, and informed laymen that are suffering from confusion and division, but charitable wealthy laity as well. Can it be true that Pope Francis and select cardinals are at the center of this confusion and division? Say it isn't so.

  • Posted by: james-w-anderson8230 - Mar. 23, 2018 8:24 PM ET USA

    The bishops control the foundation and don't like the recent transparency. Unfortunately for them the lay members provide the money. I would love to be a fly on the wall during their re-evaluation.