Magister: Cardinal Bertone clamps down on the Curia

All official documents to be vetted by the Secretariat of State

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Vatican secretary of state (CNS)In his column today, top Vatican-watcher Sandro Magister reports that Vatican Secretary State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone has ordered that all documents released by offices of the Curia must first be approved by the Secretariat of State.

Magister reports that Bertone was spurred to action by the document released under the auspices of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace earlier this month—a source of much controversy, mostly due to the document’s call for a world political and economic authority:

Precisely when the G20 summit in Cannes was coming to its weak and uncertain conclusion, on that same Friday, November 4 at the Vatican, a smaller summit convened in the secretariat of state was doing damage control on the latest of many moments of confusion in the Roman curia.

In the hot seat was the document on the global financial crisis released ten days earlier by the pontifical council for justice and peace. A document that had disturbed many, inside and outside of the Vatican.

The secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, complained that he had not known about it until the last moment. And precisely for this reason he had called that meeting in the secretariat of state.

Magister also notes that the primary arguments of the Justice and Peace document, which was released ahead of last week’s G20 meeting in France, apparently made little to no impact on the discussions at that meeting, and were in fact largely ignored.

At his column’s conclusion, Magister includes an editorial published in L’Osservatore Romano by Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the head of the Vatican bank, which Magister describes as “a complete repudiation of the document of the pontifical council for justice and peace.” Rather than seeing centralization of political and economic authority as the solution to the financial crises facing various nations, Tedeschi seems to see it as a major part of the problem:

There have been serious errors, which continue to persist, in interpreting and underestimating the current economic crisis.

The true origins of the collapse of birthrates and the consequences of the increase of taxes on the GDP to absorb the costs of the ageing of the population were wrongly interpreted. The effects of the decisions made to compensate for these phenomena were underestimated, especially with the de-localization of production and consumer debt.

CWR readers may recall the interview Tedeschi gave to reporter Alessandra Nucci in our August/September issue, in which he discussed many of these economic topics at length.

Related: “On Going the Way of World Government,” Mark Brumley, CWR


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About Catherine Harmon 573 Articles
Catherine Harmon is managing editor of Catholic World Report.