360° Coverage : New constitution needed to reform Vatican Curia

New constitution needed to reform Vatican Curia

Vatican City, Oct 4 (IANS/AKI) The scandal-tainted Vatican Curia or central administration needs complete overhauling with a new constitution, a group of cardinals advising Pope Francis has said.

Oct 4 2013, 12:01am CDT | by IANS

New constitution needed to reform Vatican Curia
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Vatican City, Oct 4 (IANS/AKI) The scandal-tainted Vatican Curia or central administration needs complete overhauling with a new constitution, a group of cardinals advising Pope Francis has said.

"They are leaning towards a constitution with very significant new elements; in short, a new constitution," Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi told a media briefing Thursday.

At the end of three days of closed-door meetings with the Argentinian pontiff, the group of eight cardinals concluded that more was needed than amendments to the current constitution governing the Vatican department, Lombardi said.

The bulky 1998 constitution is known by its Latin name of "Pastor Bonus" (The Good Shepherd) and re-writing the document will be a major task, according to Lombardi.

He said he did not know how long this would take.

Francis, a Vatican "outsider", announced the papal advisory board of cardinals from around the world, only a month after his election, in a clear signal that he intended to heed calls from within the Church to decentralise power from the Vatican's central government.

Lombardi said the cardinals felt that the role of the Vatican's central administration should be to serve the 1.2 billion member Roman Catholic Church "rather than the exercise of centralised power".

The revolutionary move came after Francis' predecessor Benedict XVI left a confidential report on the problems of the Curia, notably corruption and venemous infighting laid bare by the damaging "Vatileaks" scandal when papal documents were stolen from Benedict's desk by his butler and leaked to Italian media.

--IANS/AKI

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