Pope creates commission to study activities, mission of Vatican bank

The Institute for the Works of Religion, popularly known as the Vatican bank, is seen in a 2009 photo. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via Catholic Press Photo)
The Institute for the Works of Religion, popularly known as the Vatican bank, is seen in a 2009 photo. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via Catholic Press Photo)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis has created a five-person commission to review the activities and mission of the Vatican bank. The new pontifical commission, which includes two U.S. members, reflects the pope's desire to ensure the bank's activities are in harmony with the mission of the universal church and the Apostolic See, said a Vatican communique published June 26.

The communique, issued by the Vatican Secretariat of State, said the commission's aim is “to collect information on the running of the Institute” for the Works of Religion, the formal name of the Vatican bank, and to then present the results to Pope Francis. The commission, which has already begun its work, is part of the pope's larger efforts to reform the central offices of the church, the statement said.

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, told reporters that members of the College of Cardinals had asked the new pope “to work on how the central government of the church works and he's doing so with great commitment, using instruments that he finds helpful to get the information he needs to make his decisions and exercise his responsibilities.”

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