Vatican Storing Wealth for Themselves?


Regarding the Vatican’s ownership of artwork, should the Smithsonian, the Louvre, and other museums sell their collections to eliminate poverty? It seems a rational question to ask the person responding to you on Facebook, OP, why the Vatican is being singled out in this way. There is a human value to art and exposure to it that exceeds monetary value.


Ahhh, the old “Shoes of the Fisherman” argument (aka the Judas argument).

The Catholic Church is the largest provider of assistance to the poor, hungry, suffering, sick in the world.


More to the point, when a church or a museum holds a piece of artwork, the poor might actually get to be exposed to it, too. This is particularly true of sacred art and architecture and real estate held for use by the faithful.
Having said that, Pope Francis’ habits of dialing down the episcopal “standard of living” has been a good example.


What does that have to do with the Catholic Church, which is hardly rich, selling everything it owns, to feed poor people, which it is already doing. Jesus said there will always be poor.


The catholic church is the #1 charitable organization in the world.

The museums run by the Vatican are a source of income which can be used on a continual basis to help others. If we sell all the art, that source of income dries up and so does our ability to help. Not to mention if the art goes into the hands of a private person, the rest of the world can no longer be exposed to it and enjoy it. Some people are actually evangelized when they visit museums and see some of the wonderful religious art available to the public.


We have to strike a balance between realizing the poor will always be with us and examining whether we are doing what we ought to be doing.

I am satisfied that the Vatican can answer these questions, but I don’t think it is a bad thing to raise the questions. The bad thing comes when the question is raised as if it is a rhetorical point that is accepted has having been proven with no investigation into the matter, rather than a real question.


I believe the facts speak for themselves.


the vatican does have " wealth " but that wealth is primarily in the form of property and art there is no secret trove of gold and silver , and any physical money accumiliated is equivelent to that of any other nation on earth, that money gets circulated paying debts , funding this an that. Now could in theory the Vatican just sell off all the art an property it has. sure, but then the world would no longer have public access to such things and it would be held by private collectors and museums.


How I wish we lived in a world where facts don’t need an escort.


The truth takes us where the truth takes us.


Excellent reply. I wish I could “like” it three or four times.


This is, was, and probably always will be a stupid argument.


This was my first post to this forum. Are all topics this lively? I’m enjoying reading all your comments!


I hear this claim far too often. Doesn’t Walmart in the USA alone have more wealth than the Vatican?

If the Vatican were “sold”, then there would be no money coming in from tourists, which means that source of the Vatican’s income would be lost, meaning no more aid to the needy.


Along with a sizable chunk of the western world’s heritage going down the drain


Not all topics are this lively, no, you just picked one that’s easy to refute.


If you are saying that someone who asks the question honestly will have a relatively easy time getting an answer that exonerates the Vatican’s choice to keep its art collection, I think you are 100% correct. (That is not to say the Popes who originally amassed it never had luxurious motives, but that the collection is not being held that way now, so that the original motive is neither here nor there.) There are reasonable people who unfortunately accept what they are told when it is said as if the speaker has actually investigated the question. That leaves people like the OP with the mess to clean up.

1 Peter has this advice for when we are asked why we are Christian:
Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear, so that, when you are maligned, those who defame your good conduct in Christ may themselves be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that be the will of God, than for doing evil. 1 Pet. 3:15-17

I think that is excellent advice for those of us who are Catholic and fielding questions from our separated brethren. We’re not going to convince everyone, but we ought to be careful to “do no harm” by our conduct.

Not that you’d disagree with that; I’m sure we agree on that addition.


I can agree with that.


If you can’t support children, keep it zipped. Is that not the principle of NFP? Or, is it better to spawn broods that you have no hope whatsoever of ever being able to support>


That’s funny… the democrats were complaining about the Trump tax cuts not being “enough.” Yeah, people would complain.

Also, it depends on the CEO. The head of Johnson and Johnson when they had that cyanide issue… worth every penny he got paid for his response.

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