Pope Francis has made his first public comments about Vatican financial scandals following the sudden dismissal of a powerful Rome-based cardinal over claims of embezzlement.
On Sunday 4 October, as he prepared to release a new encyclical to the world, Francis told a crowd in St Peter’s Square: “It is awful to see when people who have authority in the Church seek their own interests.”
Ten days earlier, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, a former papal chief of staff, had his cardinal rights removed and was sacked from his position as prefect of the Roman Curia’s department for saints.
Speaking during the Sunday Angelus, the Pope made an implicit reference to the mismanagement of money when he reflected on the Gospel parable of the tenants. The tenants are placed in charge of a vineyard by a landowner but kill the landowner’s servants and son when they come to collect the fruit. Francis says Jesus told this parable to “admonish the chief priests and elders of the people who are about to take the wrong path,” but added also that it “applies to all times, including our own.”