Pope Francis prays in front of the statue of the Immaculate Conception at Spanish Steps in Rome.
Photograph by Franco Origlia—Getty Images
By Claire Groden
December 1, 2015

Pope Francis has reportedly ordered a widespread audit of the Vatican as the city-state roils with scandal over its finances.

The Pope plans to hire a top global accounting firm to look over the Church’s finances, and he’s set up a “Working-Party for the Economic Future,” composed of some of the top Vatican bodies, in order to create a plan for the city-state to free up more money for helping the poor, according to Bloomberg.

The panel come as the Vatican continues to be rocked by a scandal over leaks related to the Church’s finances. Three Vatican officials, including the high-ranking Lucio Balda, are on trial for leaking sensitive information to two journalists, who are also on trial. The journalists, Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi, published books based on the leaks last month that portrayed the institution as ridden with corruption and mismanagement.

The Vatican claims that the three officials on trial are “an organized criminal association” attempting to “[divulge] information and documents concerning the fundamental interests of the Holy See and the State,” according to Reuters.

 

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