04/29/2014 06:01 pm ET

Vatican Says Bureaucratic Reforms Will Not Happen Until 2015

Vatican Pool via Getty Images

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Pope Francis and his council of eight cardinals are unlikely to complete a radical shakeup of the Holy See’s administration, or Curia, before 2015, the Vatican said Tuesday (April 29).

The council, which includes Australian Cardinal George Pell, head of the Vatican’s new economic secretariat, has been meeting in Rome for the past two days and also received input from the Vatican’s secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

Francis joined the council’s discussions in between events on an intense appointment schedule that included an audience with King Juan Carlos of Spain after the historic double canonizations of Popes John Paul II and John XXIII on Sunday.

“The work is of some importance,” Pell said on Monday evening at a function to mark the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Australia and the Holy See.

The former archbishop of Sydney recently moved to Rome to take up his new position. He said there is a great deal of work to be done but declined to comment further.

The president of the Pontifical Commission for Reference on the Organization of the Economic-Administrative Structure of the Holy See (COSEA), Joseph F.X. Zahra, presented a report to the council.

The pope’s eight-member kitchen Cabinet — backed by seven lay financial experts — is now focusing on an individual appraisal of each pontifical council and will meet again in July.

The pope is determined to implement tighter financial and auditing procedures at the Vatican amid moves to overhaul the Vatican bank after allegations of money laundering and corruption.

“There is much work ahead, so we can expect it to be done not this year but the next,” said the Vatican’s chief spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi.



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