On Tuesday 2 and Wednesday 3 July, a meeting was held of the Council of Cardinals for the Study of Organisational and Economic Problems of the Holy See, presided over by Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. Particularly noteworthy was the visit on Wednesday 3 by the Holy Father Francesco, who addressed the speakers and engaged in a brief dialogue, reiterating the aims and purpose of the Council and inviting the continuation of periodical meetings.
Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, president of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, presented before the Council first the report on the consolidated financial statement of the Holy See for the year 2012 and subsequently that of the Governorate of Vatican City State.
The consolidated financial statement for the Holy See for the year 2012 closes with a profit of € 2,185,622, due mainly to good performance in financial management.
The most significant categories of expenditure are those regarding the cost of personnel,(2,823 persons), means of social communication considered in their entirety, and the new property taxes (IMU) which resulted in an increase in expenditure of € 5,000,000 compared to the previous year's figures.
The administration of the Governorate is autonomous, and independent of contributions from the Holy See. Through its various offices, it supervises requirements related to the administration of the State. The 2012 financial statement closes with a profit of € 23,079,800. The Governorate employs a total of 1,936 persons.
Peter’s Pence, the contributions offered by the faithful in support of the Holy Father’s charity, passed from USD 69,711,722.76 in 2011, to USD 65,922,637.08. Contributions made pursuant to canon 1271 of the Code of Canon Law - i.e., the economic support offered by ecclesiastical circumscriptions throughout the world to maintain the service the Roman Curia offers the universal Church - passed from USD 32,128,675.08 in 2011 to USD 28,303,239.28 in 2012, a reduction of 11.91%.
Further contributions to the Holy See on the part of the Institutes of Consecrated Life, Societies of Apostolic Life and Foundations passed from USD 1,194,217.78, in 2011, to USD 1,133,466.91, with a reduction of 5.09%. In total, therefore, there has been a decrement of 7.45% compared to the total in US dollars recorded in 2011.
The Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR), as it does each year, offered the Holy Father a significant sum in support of his apostolic and charitable ministry. For 2012 this was a sum of € 50,000,000.
The Cardinal Fathers reflected on the data presented in the financial statements, acknowledged the positive results attained, and encouraged the reform necessary to reduce costs through the simplification and rationalisation of existent bodies, as well as more careful planning of the activities of all administrations. The Members of the Council expressed their deep gratitude for the support given, often anonymously, to the Holy Father’s universal ministry in spite of moments of economic crisis, and encouraged the continuation of this good work.