Cardinals' "appreciation" of Curia reform, expression of communion between center and periphery of the Church
The new economic system is "transparent" and restores "credibility" to the Church. The president of the IOR, "the most critical problems are behind us, now we look forward". The responsibilities so far pertaining to Vatican departments could be decentralized in the sense of "subsidiarity". "A certain consensus on a gradual implementation when there are decisions or measures that seem ripe".

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "Appreciation" for the innovations in the economic and administrative body of the Holy See, which the Pope has already introduced or are in the program, was expressed "in most of the interventions" of the 164 cardinals participating in the consistory at the Vatican, in the presence of Pope Francis. The need for the reform was highlighted to be able to express a deep sense of "communion" between the center and the periphery of the Church, but not one limited to a mere efficiency.

Alongside the issues of reform of the economic system, addressed today, which restores "credibility" to the Church, the interventions yesterday afternoon and this morning highlighted the expectations for subsidiarity, the relationship between the Roman Curia and the local churches and a more prominent role should be given to women in the Church.

Father Federico Lombardi, Holy See press office director briefed reporters on the morning session. "This morning there was a very wide-ranging report on the issues of the economy and economic bodies." "A small introduction by Cardinal George Pell - with the screening of "slides" accompanied by explanations - then Msgr. Joseph FX Zhara, vice-coordinator of the Council for the Economy ", took the floor followed by Cardinal Reinhard Marx, President of the Council for the Economy, who reported the council's progress. Cardinal Pell then took the floor again, speaking of the Secretariat for the Economy and illustrating the work done and the financial statements drawn up to date. Finally, the President of the IOR, Jean-Baptiste De Franssu outlined the "current situation and future prospects" of the Institute maintaining that "the most critical problems are behind us, now we are looking ahead". Many of the final interventions were actually expressions of appreciation for the effort put into the reorganization of the administration of the Holy See in the sense "of transparency, accountability, integrity, competence" that will give great "credibility" to the path of change undertaken by the Roman Curia.

In the ensuing debate, 19 cardinals intervened. "In general," Father Lombardi said most of the interventions were expressions of appreciation. "All the reports gave the impression that the reform of the economic dicasteries and the administration is convincing, made with great insistence on transparency, accountability, integrity, and competence". "The climate was not aggressive" toward the Roman Curia, because "the path of reform initiated by Pope Francis is clearly in the service of the universal Church." The questions were "quite different" in nature, some asking for an "explanation ", others ask for "clarification", others "more technical and detailed", about, for example, the "relationship between the Holy See and Vatican City State"and the skills of the various bodies." In general it was noted that "the positive spirit of credibility that lead the Church to this reform must also spread out to the dioceses". Answering a journalists question, the Vatican spokesman said that "there were no specific references" to the news, reported recently by the South African Cardinal Wilfrid Napier Fox, of a conflict on the budgets and responsibilities between the Secretariat of Economy, on the one hand, Propaganda Fide and the pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, on the other, nor were predictions on the statutes of the same super-ministry made ("work continues on the statutes because there are points or issues that still need to be finalized") or on the completion of the nominations ("no one has spoken in terms of time" but again " the importance of the auditor general was underlined ").

The relationship between the Vatican and the Bishops' Conferences, continued Father Lombardi, is one of the "principal agents" of the reform and was discussed yesterday afternoon. This expectation is joined to the need, highlighted by many, that the responsibilities hitherto pertaining to Vatican departments can be decentralized in the sense of "subsidiarity", preserving what is already being done effectively within the offices of the Holy See and instead changing, maybe assigning to others, what can be improved. "There was a return to the criterion of simplification, as a shared criterion and considerations regarding personal, the need for a qualified staff from the point of view of competence, but also the need for an ecclesial spirit, spirituality, dedication, and drawn from the different parts of the Church so that the Curia also reflects the richness and diversity of the universal Church. There were also discussions on the issue of responsibility of the laity and in particular also of women and their presence in positions of responsibility even in the Roman Curia. "

The ongoing reform is long and complex and- as one cardinal present at the Consistory said - it need not necessarily represent a break with the "Pastor bonus", which instead - as was reaffirmed - contains "very positive and important elements" that "should not be lost. "Moreover, the same path of renewal could take place "in parts", as noted by Father Lombardi referring to the preference expressed by some of the cardinals. "There is a certain consensus that decisions or measures that seem mature should be implemented, even gradually, without the need to wait for the completion of the entire project, which, as we have said will require a considerable amount of time".