Benedict’s Remarks on the “Vatileaks” Story

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“Events in recent days regarding the Curia and my collaborators have brought sadness to my heart, though the firm conviction, that despite human weakness, despite difficulties and trials, the Church is guided by the Holy Spirit, and the Lord will never fail to give His aid in sustaining the Church on her journey. Nevertheless, some entirely gratuitous rumors have multiplied, amplified by some media, which went well beyond the facts, offering a picture of the Holy See that does not correspond to reality. I would like therefore to reiterate my confidence and my encouragement to my staff and to all those who, day in and day out, faithfully and with a spirit of sacrifice, quietly help me in fulfilling my ministry.”

Pope Benedict XVI

It’s hard to find a good overview of this story which doesn’t include a lot of wild speculation, but this one is adequate. Speculations about power struggles are misguided and informed more by gossip than fact, so read with care.

About Thomas L. McDonald

Thomas L. McDonald writes about technology, theology, history, games, and shiny things. Details of his rather uneventful life as a professional writer and magazine editor can be found in the About tab.

  • elGaucho

    Thomas or others, can you comment on what exactly is going on right now with this? I am a little bothered by the suggestion that a Vatican official begged the pope not to transfer him after revealing corruption that would have cost the Vatican millions. But how much is embellishment by media who are incapable of interpreting facts correctly? I feel like the reporting has been sloppy at best and it is difficult to follow exactly what happened and whether there is even a story at all.

  • http://www.godandthemachine.com Thomas L. McDonald

    I don’t think there’s enough information out there to say either way. Everything right now is innuendo and gossip. What seems pretty clear is that the “secrets” revealed were little more than candid insider discussions behind decision making, not bombshells. The man arrested–the pope’s valet, not his “butler” as the media reports–was loyal to the pope and the common wisdom is that probably thought he was helping people protect him. There have been issues with the “Vatican bank” (the IOR) for years, and they’ve been trying to clean it up with minimal success. Casting this as a power struggle between Bertone and the Pope makes for interesting copy, and may in fact be accurate, but I don’t think there’s enough data to say either way. I do know that all of the media attention is way out of proportion to what is actually happening.

  • Oregon Catholic

    It’s very significant for the clear documentation of what has been less formally known for years – that money and power and a resulting corruption, sometimes criminal, are inextricably woven throughout a very political Roman Curia. It should be an embarassment of the highest order to any RCC hierarch who follows (or claims to) the Gospel of Christ. While the Church is full of sinners, none of us should accept this as status quo going forward. This is a good time for the laity to let Rome know that we expect them to get their house in order and get back to Gospel values.

  • Ticklebee

    If this is a good article I’d really hate to see a bad one. Every sentence is crafted to show the Vatican in the worst light possible. I wondered also about the transfer of the whistleblower, but we don’t know motivations. If Benedict is the kind and thoughtful man we think he is, he might have decided that this man needed to be away from any toxic fallout from the politocos. That’s just a wild example, but we can’t know motivations.


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