Scandals block Vatican's message

From CNN:

Yet, of course, that’s not the Catholic story grabbing headlines at the moment. Given the almost surreal cascade of events in Rome, it has become virtually impossible to tell any other story about the church, or for the Vatican to wield its moral authority to intercede on behalf of people who truly need the help.
To be sure, the leaks scandal is irresistibly fascinating.

Confidential documents began rolling out of the Vatican in January, and in the months since, so many have leaked that they’ve been collected into a best-selling Italian book subtitled “The Secret Papers of Benedict XVI.”

Some have been easy for the Vatican to dismiss, such as an anonymous memo outlining a Borgia-esque plot to kill the pope, which struck most people as almost comical in its implausibility.

I guess the Catholic radio stations and my parish must really be out of it because the “scandal” has very little traction around here. I also thought that the plot to kill the pope was dis-credited already as a false report?

Did you see the “Editor’s Note?” Is this a reliable source? I know my vote!

Some still consider CNN a reliable source. But it this has been on the more reliable Fox News.

This story of the Vatican leaks puzzles me. I see a great deal of coverage about the alleged leaker, and the allegation that the leaks have revealed corruption in the Vatican. There was another story in my local newspaper this morning. But I never see any detail of the underlying alleged corruption. Cronyism? Infighting among bureaucrats? No doubt. It is after all, a bureaucracy. But the story reported often seems to be all surface overlay without substance. Is there corruption? Fine, tell us about it. I’d like to know. But the story too often seems to be about the leakers and not whether there is any substance to what is leaked.

I’m reminded of the “Pentagon Papers.” When newspapers published the full transcripts, people were bored, and asked, okay, so what’s all the fuss about?

There’s also a long-running mystery surrounding the 1983 disappearance of a 15-year-old girl named Emanuela Orlandi whose family lived and worked in the Vatican. It’s an article of faith in Italy, despite repeated denials, that the Vatican knows more than it has let on. Under mounting pressure, the Vatican recently approved opening the tomb of a notorious Roman mob boss rumored to have played a role in the kidnapping, to determine if any evidence was buried with him.

After a substantial donation, the mobster had been buried in one of Rome’s most storied basilicas – in itself, a serious embarrassment for the church.

It reads like a gossip column…

John Allen? He’s one of the best reporters/analysts around on the Vatican beat.

That’s basically what he said.

Fox News is only reliable as a source of Republican-slanted news and views. CNN is nonpartisan, at least.

The major issues, apparently, involve some extreme favoritism in awarding building contracts, and some serious corruption (once again) in the Vatican Bank. For example, it was revealed that the Vatican paid almost double the actual cost for its Nativity Scene in St. Peter’s Square last Christmas, despite clear evidence of much better offers for exactly the same thing. This was apparently due to favoritism and possible favors for contracts. The bank was also revealed to have some sketchy business dealings, possibly (but not definitively) linked to money laundering. I haven’t read much about the details further than that, though.

It also revealed that two factions of cardinals are in serious disagreement with each other, and primarily involve factions that are either for or against Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone. (It is alleged that the Bertone may be a key figure involved in the corruption, and that the pope is rather “out of control” of the government structure of the church, in much the way that scandals plagued President Ulysses Grant’s cabinet.)

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit