Vatican City, 19 July 2013 (VIS) – Pope Francis has written a Chirograph, dated 18 July, by which he establishes a Pontifical Commission for Reference on the study and guidance of the organisation of the economic-administrative structure of the Holy See, the full text of which is given below:
“The deliberations of these days on the positive data in the financial statements, communicated by the Council of Cardinals for the study of organisational and economic problems of the Holy See: Consolidated Financial Statement and Financial Statement of the Governorate of Vatican City State for the year 2012 lead Us, having heard the opinion of Most Eminent Cardinals, Brothers in the Episcopate and collaborators consulted on the matter, to continue in the work of introducing reforms in the Institutions of the Holy See, aspiring to the simplification and rationalisation of the existing bodies and more careful planning of the economic activities of all the Vatican Administrations.
To this end, We have decided to establish a Commission for reference to gather accurate information on economic questions regarding the Vatican Administrations and to co-operate with the aforementioned Council of Cardinals in its valuable work, offering the technical support of specialist advice and developing strategic solutions for improvement, so as to avoid the misuse of economic resources, to improve transparency in the processes of purchasing goods and services; to refine the administration of goods and real estate; to work with ever greater prudence in the financial sphere; to ensure the correct application of accounting principles; and to guarantee healthcare and social security benefits to those eligible.
The Commission is to carry out its duties in accordance with this Chirograph and with Our provisions currently in force:
1. The Commission shall consist of a minimum of eight Members, including a President, who is its legal representative, and a Secretary Coordinator who has the powers of a delegate and acts on behalf of and for the Commission, collecting documents, data, and the information necessary for the fulfilment of its institutional functions.
2.The Members, all nominated by the Supreme Pontiff, are experts in the relevant legal, economic, financial and organisational matters.
3. The institutional functions of the Commission shall not encroach upon the sphere of competence of the government and the activities of the Administrations concerned, which shall collaborate with the Commission upon request. Professional secrecy and other possible restrictions established by law shall neither curtail nor restrict the access of the Commission to documents, data and information necessary for the fulfilment of the duties entrusted to it.
4. The Commission shall keep Us informed of its activities in the course of its work and shall deliver to Us the results obtained. It shall deliver to Us its entire paper and digital archive upon the conclusion of its mandate.
5. The Commission shall have at its disposal the appropriate resources, including interpreters and translators, and instruments for its institutional functions. It may avail itself of qualified experts and consultants to be enlisted worldwide, from outside the Holy See, or from within the Holy See provided that this does not give rise to any conflict of interest in the exercise of professions or the fulfilment of functions and roles connected with the activities of the Vatican Administrations.
6. The Commission shall collaborate, upon request, with the Working Group of eight Cardinals constituted to draft a plan of reform for the Apostolic Constitution Pastor Bonus on the Roman Curia.
7. The Commission’s activities shall take effect as from the date of this Chirograph. The dissolution of the Commission shall be announced.
Given in the Vatican on 18 July 2013, in the first year of my Pontificate. Francesco”