Council of Cardinals Completes Second Day of Meetings

Members Listen to Reports from Commission Examining Institute for Works of Religion

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The second day of the 3rd meeting of the Council of Cardinals – colloquially known as the C8 or G8 -focused on the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), known in the media as the Vatican Bank.

Vatican spokesman, Fr. Federico Lombardi, briefed journalists today on the meetings of the C8. Also present for the morning sessions was Cardinal-designate Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State.

Fr. Lombardi said that during today’s morning session, the Council listened to a report by Cardinal Raffaele Farina, president of the Commission for Reference on the Institute for Works of Religion. The commission was established by Pope Francis to acquire a better knowledge of the legal position and the activities of the IOR. The Cardinal’s assessment of the report, Fr. Lombardi noted, lasted for 3 hours.

“One of the points in which the Commission has worked on, and on which the Cardinals have reflected on very much, was that of the mission of the Institute for the Religious Works,” Fr. Lombardi said. “Hence, to see the questions that concern the institutions of the Holy See in relation to the mission of the Church, the mission of service of the Church in the world, and not simply from the point of view of an economic operation of limited scope.”

Among the members of the Commission that were present were Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta Ochoa de Chinchetru, and Msgr. Peter Brian Wells.

The Vatican spokesman noted that while past problems with the IOR, as well as possible reforms and future formulations were discussed, the Council is still in a “phase of study” and “no decisions have been adopted yet.”

Although the work of the Council has been intense, Fr. Lombardi said that there is still much more work to be done. The expectation of a new Apostolic Constitution or a possible reform of the IOR is “still premature,” he said.

The meetings will continue this afternoon and the C8 is scheduled to meet with the Council of Fifteen, a separate Council of Cardinals established by Blessed John Paul II and “responsible for the general consolidated financial statement of the Holy See and the Governorate of Vatican City State.”

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Junno Arocho Esteves

Newark, New Jersey, USA Bachelor of Science degree in Diplomacy and International Relations.

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