So the Vatican Bank was giving a barely passing grade by Moneyval because it would be cheaper than Obama's bailout of American banks from bankruptcy. Italy is in the verge of economic fallout like Greece and Spain and they would not dare touch the Vatican Bank, one its best source of income. But it is best that the United Nations end the "country" of the Vatican so that it will serve only God and not use its "diplomatic immunity" to serve Mammon and perpetuate the poverty of Third World countries and the rape of women, read more here
Why Vatican must end as a “country”. Governments defy Vatican dogmas and laws. Germany bans circumcision. Vatican Evils in India: a compilation of true stories of nuns and priestshttp://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/07/why-vatican-must-end-as-country-vatican.html
Updated June 17, 2012 Vatican Bank may fail transparency test, 8 out 16 is failing grade. Italy to tax Vatican billions of commercial assets, etc. see news updates below.
Read our latest atciles in
Vatican attacks American nuns: A compilation. USA nuns live Gospel, serve the poor and sick...while Benedict XVI lives in luxury out-of-touch-with-reality in Vatican Bank Tower http://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/04/vatican-attacks-american-nuns.html
Hypocrite Benedict silenced Fr. Tony Flannery, Brian D'Arcy – A compilation… but he does not silence Cardinal Bernard Law and JP2 Army – John Paul II Pedophile Priests http://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/04/hypocrite-benedict-silenced-outspoken.html
Irish Law versus Canon Law on seal of Confession: A compilation. Sacrament of Confession protects criminals and ignores their victims http://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/04/irish-law-versus-canon-law-on-seal-of.html
Updated May 24, 2012
Ever since the USA government listed the Vatican as 'potential money-laundering center', the Vatican is trying to patch-up its image in order to “restore” its reputation and its relations with the international financial community. So in a no confidence vote today, it fired its president, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, "for not having carried out various functions of primary importance to his office" , see news updates below. How on earth can Tedeschi carry out the functions in his office at the Vatican Bank when he also teaches ethics in finance at Milan’s Catholic University and so he could show up only two days a week at the Vatican Bank while tending to his other job as head of Spain's Banco Santander's Italian unit? Imagine that, only at the Vatican can one be the President of 2 banks or perhaps more. For the Vatican Bank to have relations with other financial institutions, of course, it has to hire someone already in a high level position to do its international transactions, like the President of Spain's biggest bank. That shows how cunning the Vatican is. We will put all news related to the Vatican Bank in this post.
Read our latest articles:
Systemic abuse within Franciscan religious order: A compilation http://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/05/systemic-abuse-within-franciscan.html
Irish Law versus Canon Law on seal of Confession: A compilation. Sacrament of Confession protects criminals and ignores their victims http://popecrimes.blogspot.ca/2012/04/irish-law-versus-canon-law-on-seal-of.html
May 9, 2012
From the Crimes against Humanity of Benedict XVI at The Hague, to Amnesty International listing the Vatican for its violation against human rights, to Ireland shutting down its Vatican Embassy in Rome, now it is the United States of America listing the Vatican as a 'potential money-laundering center' because of “the large volumes of international currency that goes through the Holy See” -- all these prove that the Vatican Titanic Ship is sinking in moral bankruptcy with its Opus Dei Golden Cows Blessed John Paul II and Cardinal Ratzinger as its Masters of Deception at the helm, read our related articles below.
"Behind the cross there stands the dollar. Behind the prelate there stands the plutocrat.
"For centuries there has prevailed a strong link between the secular and religious moneyed interests. Today major ministries hold billion-dollar investments in armaments, oil, banking, and just about every other large corporate enterprise…
"Masters for the Money
"First in mind when thinking of wealthy religionists might be the Roman Catholic “Holy Father,” better known to us as the pope, bedecked in his gold-laced robes, padding about the Vatican’s richly appointed chambers, presiding over mountains of treasure. The Roman Catholic Church is a worldwide organization that posses more wealth in real estate, gold reserves, stocks, bonds, and art treasures than any other single institution or transnational corporation." (p. 109 God and His Demons, see link below)
As Ireland formally leads nations to shut down its Vatican Embassy in Rome, now it is the United States of America government that is leading nations to watch out for the Vatican country as a 'potential money-laundering center' because of “the large volumes of international currency that goes through the Holy See”. The USA government is not talking about cheap change rosaries, medals and Made in China religious trinkets being sold at stores around St. Peter’s Square and the Vatican museum but rather hard core money laundering as have been revealed in the media in the past, read links below. The Vatican of course is the Master of Secrecy (it refuses to give list of pedophile priests of the JP2 Army - John Paul II Pedophile Priests Army http://jp2army.blogspot.com/ and Benedict XVI is the Master Manipulator of the Media so the main stream media will have to pierce through the arsenal of Vatican Pied Piper Empire with its brilliant Pied Pipers brainwashing people with the infallibility of the Pope and its Princes the red robed Cardinals who enjoy "diplomatic immunity" to travel unchecked with billions of dollars in secret transfers from one country to the Holy See. Read our related articles Benedict XVI must first be tried at The Hague and face true justice, or else, Gregorian Conference is only a PR campaign and more Vatican deceptions http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2012/02/benedict-xvi-must-first-be-tried-at.html
March 14, 2012
Here is the tip of another iceberg to hit the Vatican Titanic Ship as it is revealed that the Obama administration has listed the Vatican as 'potential money-laundering center'. In plain English..."The State Department merely sees the Vatican as a possible risk because of the large volumes of money processed through its banking system". So much for the pathological lie of Vatican Pied Piper John L. Allen Jr. who wrote to counterpunch our blog that there is no such thing as the "Vatican Bank", see his article below.
The Vatican is the most evil power on earth because it uses Jesus Christ as its mask for the Pope and Cardinals and Papal Nuncios to have diplomatic immunity and therefore can travel freely for money laundering and act as carriers and conduits for ill gotten wealth into its SECRET Vatican Swiss Banks. History in the 21st century will eventually disclose these evil money routes and prove us right.
May the United Nations end the status of the Vatican as a "country" soon because it has no permanent population of only 800 only-male homosexual GAYS where women and children are forbidden to reside within its one-building medieval walls.
Read our related articles:
John L.Allen Jr.the Pied Piper fooling people again...when will Catholics ever learn to give their money to Red Cross and not to the Vatican Mammon http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2012/02/john-l-allen-jr-pied-piper-fooling.html
Ireland appoints new ambassador to the Holy See...to do what exactly...with a few hundred GAY homosexual residents of the smallest country, Vatican? http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/12/ireland-appoints-new-ambassador-to-holy.html
Ireland leads nations to close Vatican Embassy…beginning the end of the Holy See! Vatican Bank cannot buy souls of SECULAR government officials http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/11/ireland-leads-nations-to-close-vatican.html
Vatican Bank Under Investigation for Money Laundering http://pope-ratz.blogspot.com/2010/09/vatican-bank-under-investigation-for.html
OC Diocese buys Crystal Cathedral as flesh-factory of Christ... for wealthy God-flesh-eating Catholics http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/11/oc-diocese-buys-crystal-cathedral-as.html
The Vatican Billions and their sources: Holy Mass Tourism for Each Generation. Miracles, Portents and Wonder for Sale http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/03/vatican-billions-holy-mass-tourism-for.html
John Paul and his crime syndicate: Part I, Fr. Maciel http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/03/john-paul-and-his-crime-syndicate-part.html
Eucharist feeds “dysfunction, disconnection, elitism...narcissism” of Benedict XVI, therefore, Ireland must not “invite” Pope to Eucharistic Congress http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/12/eucharist-feeds-dysfunction.html
John L.Allen Jr.Pied Piper of John Paul II deceives Catholics with his essay Fast-Track Saint in Newsweek -- with Vatican lunacy & Satanic timeline http://jp2army.blogspot.com/
insane KC STAR CAMPAIGN HITS by Catholic League fanatic Bill Donohue propagating... Bishop Finn make Devil's Bowels smell like roses in KC, Missouri http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/11/bishop-finn-makes-devils-bowels-smell.html
Benedict XVI Master Manipulator of the Media…the Pied Piper of Children deceiving them away from truth of his Crimes Against Humanity at The Hague http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/11/benedict-xvi-master-manipulator-of.html
Boston hosted former Swiss Guard’s seminar -based on the new “Vatican Trinity”.. Swiss Guards are the financial Navy Seals of the Vatican Bank http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/10/boston-to-host-former-swiss-guards.html
Nazi Gold and the Vatican. How Rome saved Fascists. Vatican Bank claims. Nazi Connection To Franciscan Order Uncovered Near Medjugorje http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/09/nazi-gold-and-vatican-how-rome-saved.html
Opus Dei control the Vatican Bank and multinational corporations that control the world's finances... with Knights of Malta. VIDEOS of Vatican Wealth http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2011/08/opus-dei-control-vatican-bank-and.html
SO WHAT, new 22 Cardinals and Pellini. FOCUS:Benedict's crimes against humanity,Vatican violation of human rights. Again,no new Jesuit voting Cardinal http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2012/01/benedict-appoints-22-new-cardinal.html
Boston 10th anniversary and Bernie Law is still cloning Jesus in the Eucharist http://popecrimes.blogspot.com/2012/01/boston-10th-anniversary-and-bernie-law.html
Irish PM blasts ‘narcissism’ of Vatican. The narcissism of John Paul II and the Vatican are one and the same http://jp2m.blogspot.com/2011/07/irish-pm-blasts-narcissism-of-vatican.html
9/11 victims 3,000. JP2 Army 100,000s. May Day: both Hitler and bin Laden Announced Dead on May 1 on John Paul II Beatification Day B-Day http://jp2m.blogspot.com/2011/05/911-victims-5000-jp2-army-100000s-may.html
Obama admin list Vatican as 'potential money-laundering center'
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
It isn't, but the US State Department has listed it anyway.
The US State Department has added an unlikely name to the list of countries that are considered money-laundering centers - the Vatican. The listing was published Wednesday in the 2012 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, and lists 190 countries.
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - The list is divided into three categories, primary concern, concern, and monitored. The Vatican has been listed with 67 other countries which also includes Poland, Egypt, Ireland, Hungary, and Chile.
A State Department official did confess that the Vatican had recently established programs to prevent money laundering.
The apology continued, as Susan Pittman of the State Department explained, "To be considered a jurisdiction of concern merely indicates that there is a vulnerability to a financial system by money launderers. With the large volumes of international currency that goes through the Holy See, it is a system that makes it vulnerable as a potential money-laundering center."
In plain English, there is no accusation of wrongdoing, nor even evidence of it. The State Department merely sees the Vatican as a possible risk because of the large volumes of money processed through its banking system.
Meanwhile, the Vatican has taken robust steps to ensure that money is handled in accord with strict integrity and in compliance with all international regulations. In fact, the Vatican is asking for inclusion on the "white list" of states that fully comply with international standards against fraud and money-laundering. The Vatican may be listed on the white list as early as June.
The Vatican Bank has operated independently for 30 years, after untangling itself from the Banco Ambrosiano, which itself had become the target of scandal. Since then, there has been no question raised by anyone that the Vatican Bank has operated safely and securely with the highest degree of integrity, State Department pronouncements notwithstanding.
Why the 'Vatican Bank' doesn't exist
by John L Allen Jr on Feb. 19, 2012 NCR Today
ROME -- Over the years, few Catholic outfits have generated intrigue quite like the “Vatican Bank.” Speculation about its inner workings has boomed again in recent days, with a series of leaked Vatican documents about purported shady transactions, claims of stonewalling of Italian inquests, and alleged loopholes in anti-money laundering laws.
The current issue of l’Espresso, Italy’s most widely read newsmagazine, captures the mood with an eye-catching cover story under the headline, “God’s Bank: Dossiers, Accusations, and Venom.”
Whatever one makes of those reports, there’s a slight problem with the premise: The “Vatican Bank,” as such, doesn’t actually exist.
To be sure, there is something inside Vatican walls called the “Institute for the Works of Religion” (often referred to by its Italian acronym, IOR). While it supports papal initiatives and the pope’s ambassadors in various nations, the IOR also takes deposits, makes investments, and moves money around the world, mostly on behalf of Catholic entities such as dioceses and religious orders.
According to the l’Espresso piece, the IOR has roughly 33,000 clients, most of them located in Europe, though some 3,000 are in Africa and South America. All told, the value of its holdings, known as its “patrimony,” is estimated at roughly $6.5 billion.
The IOR has been caught up in more than its share of scandals over the years, from the Banco Ambrosiano meltdown of the 1970s to Italy’s bribery scandals in the 1990s, and the latest newspaper reports suggest to some that not much has changed. Insiders, however, insist the bad old days are gone, that today the place is run by sophisticated lay professionals committed to playing by the rules.
That’s not just for the moral reasons laid out by Benedict XVI, they say, but also because compliance with secular benchmarks of transparency brings down transaction costs, and permits the IOR to compete on a level playing field with other financial institutions in Europe.
In light of the place’s history, outsiders may be forgiven some skepticism. To evaluate it accurately, however, requires a grasp of what the IOR really is.
Here, according to experts who are familiar with the legal history and current practice of the place, is why the IOR is more akin to a “foundation” than the common sense definition of a bank.
First, and most basically, the IOR operates as a “non-profit” institution, whereas most banks are for-profit commercial enterprises. As with nonprofit organizations generally, any surplus revenue is supposed to be used to achieve the IOR’s aims (defined as support of charity and pious works) rather than distributed as profit or dividends.
Second, a bank is usually defined as a financial institution which takes deposits and makes loans. IOR, however, is barred by its by-laws from using the money of depositors to extend credit. Rather than make loans or issue mortgages, it puts money in relatively low risk investments. For this reason, although it reportedly took a hit like everybody else during the economic meltdown, it never foundered like the banking systems of Europe and the United States.
(The IOR will occasionally issue something called, in Italian, a pegno, but it’s not so much a loan as a way to resolve a short-term cash flow problem. Basically, it happens if a client, such as a religious order, needs a quick infusion of cash and is willing to put up property of equivalent value as collateral. It’s not a “loan,” as banks define lending, because it’s short-term, risk-free, and does not use depositors’ money.)
Third, because the IOR does not do any lending, it also doesn’t hold any reserves. It doesn’t maintain a stockpile of currency, or gold, to cover loans and to guard against runs, which real banks are legally required to do. (Cover art for the “God’s Bank” piece in l’Espresso depicted bars of gold stacked inside the cupola of St. Peter’s Dome. It’s a great visual, but not literally true.)
Fourth, the IOR is not a private entity like most banks. It’s a public entity created by a sovereign, in this case the pope. While its operational side is recognizably modern, with a general manager and board of directors (a five member group including senior bankers, as well as Carl Anderson, head of the Knights of Columbus), sitting on top is a government commission of five cardinals appointed by the pope.
Financial wonks will note that directors of a bank can sit on the board of directors of the IOR, something that would create a fatal conflict of interest if it were really itself a bank.
Fifth, the IOR is not open to the general public. In a normal bank, virtually anybody can walk in and open an account. To put money in the IOR, you must be a Vatican or Holy See employee or official, a representative of a Catholic institute or order, a diocese, or one of the personal gentleman assistants to the pope who serve at ceremonial functions around the apostolic palace. Each person is interviewed, a valid government document showing proof of identity must be provided, and then the general manager of the “Institute” (as it is called around the Vatican), must literally sign off on the application.
Sixth, technically speaking, the IOR doesn’t even have what are called “accounts” in common parlance. When someone deposits money in the IOR, the internal argot is that it’s being deposited in a “fund,” not an “account.” The depositor gets a number, recorded under his or her name, and retains control over the assets, but the idea is that rather than making a normal bank deposit, the depositor is participating in a fund.
(The question of “accounts” is a sensitive one, since the IOR has been fighting off the idea that there are "ciphered" accounts as remnants of a more opaque past. The IOR insists that not only do such secret accounts not exist, but that their computer systems do not even have the possibility to create such a thing.)
Seventh, the IOR, unlike European or American banks, has no networks of clients and subsidiaries throughout the world. In fact, it prohibits the common banking practice of permitting banks to open accounts with it in Italy or elsewhere else.
Why does all this matter?
Without a doubt, $6.5 billion is not chump change, and it’s perfectly reasonable to expect the Vatican to manage that money honestly and responsibly. That’s especially so since much of it comes from ordinary Catholics who support religious orders, charitable associations, and other church institutions. Moreover, because IOR has been a source of scandal in the past, even fair-minded people are likely to receive its assurances of reform with a stance of “trust but verify.”
Good oversight, however, begins with correctly identifying the nature of the beast. Whatever else the IOR may be, a “bank” it’s not.
BAD DAYS ARE GONE, DUH?
Submitted by Jerry Slevin (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
BAD DAYS ARE GONE, DUH? ......... So John, "insiders" have insisted to you that "...the bad old days are gone...". That's a relief! Good reporting. But what about the $30 million of the IOR's assets the Italian bank regulators recently seized in connection with a Mafia money laundering investigation that was upheld by an Italian court?
If you just entered the term "Vatican Bank" in the BishopAccountability.org website search box, you would quickly have seen that the "bad all days" still linger. Moreover, the new book by your former NCR colleague, Jason Berry, entitled "Render Unto Rome, The Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church", gives a much different picture than that portrayed by your "insider" sources. If you go to the book description on Amazon.com/Books, you can even search "Vatican Bank" for free and find numerous troubling references.
Your obfuscation of the IOR story is troubling. It is true IOR has some functions that are unique to the Vatican's mission, but it still a bank in the common usage of that term. That is why European banking regulators monitor it. It holds funds, including funds that ultimately come from Catholic contributors, and distributes and transfers these funds through banking channels. The IOR, or more popularly, the "Vatican Bank", has had recent irregularities that resulted in bank regulators' investigations, regardless of the "insiders" efforts to spin you otherwise. Citing prominent showpiece directors cannot change these facts.
John, if these are the same "insiders" that appear to spin you with the fairy tale that the scandal involving priest sexual abuse of children is over, perhaps it is time to find some new reliable sources.
You point out in your recent promotion piece, about Timothy Dolan as possibly being elected the next pope, that American bishops are viewed at the Vatican, surprisingly, as good managers. One hesitates to mention one of them as a candidate to clean up the Vatican Bank, given the $250 million reported loss the Vatican took under American Archbishop Paul Marcinkus' financial mismanagement.
Were you really serious yesterday about Timothy Dolan for Pope, or is this just Vatican spin to help Dolan with his failing effort to replace Obama via an "anti-contraception crusade"?
For more details on Cardinal Dolan as Pope, please read the comment, "Pope Dolan, God Help Us!", readily accessible by clicking on at:
(Cover art for the “God’s
Submitted by Craig B. McKee, Hong Kong (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
(Cover art for the “God’s Bank” piece in l’Espresso depicted bars of gold stacked inside the cupola of St. Peter’s Dome. It’s a great visual, but not literally true.)
Mr. Allen's piece does not
Submitted by Henry Parker (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
Mr. Allen's piece does not explain away the corruption that is known about the IOR or, if you will, the Vatican Bank. Nor can he say whether the corruption still exists. Mr. Allen really does not know but quotes unnamed sources "Insiders, however, insist the bad old days are gone." I feel a bit uneasy about this report in the midst more allegations.
Surely this is another reason
Submitted by ReginaSchulte (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
Surely this is another reason we should cease and desist sending money to the Vatican. Humanitarian and compassionate organizations will make better use of it and provide some transparent accounting.
Find a child who needs shoes!
Submitted by JeannieAlgodones (not verified) on Feb. 22, 2012.
Find a child who needs shoes! Go into the inner-city and find a child who needs shoes, warm clothes, a coat and gloves. I strongly encourage you to put your charitable donations where you will personally see that they will be put to good use and affect the life of at least one person! We are God's Hands extended to those in need. When we give to Peter's pence the majority of money doesn't go to the poor, it goes into investments! Would Jesus have denied someone food and clothing by instructing Judas "to invest" contributions that were given to His ministry? I rather doubt it, but unfortunately the Church, which claims to operate "In His Name," doesn't think that it's irregular to have billions of dollars on hand to invest (and lose) in programs like "The Calvi Scandal," rather than to do the works of Jesus, like feeding and clothing the poor!
Cardinal Marcinkus: Possible
Submitted by JeannieAlgodones (not verified) on Feb. 21, 2012.
Cardinal Marcinkus: Possible Patron Saint for the IOR! The IOR could easily set up several "Ciphered" computer accounts on DIFFERENT computers. In doing so, information from one computer would not accidentally contaminate other "Ciphered Accounts," and for all intents and purposes, the hard-drives of "other" computers! The Vatican is well-known for Her "Secret Archives." It wouldn't be impossible to have "Secret Computers" and "Secret Accounts," hidden from the watchful eyes of all European Watchdog Groups. All would remain "SECRET" until another Archbishop, like Vigano, gets ticked off and alerts the press to irregularities! Too bad good, old Cardinal Marcinkus is dead! He would have figured out a way to circumvent the watchful eyes of the European Banking Community! Maybe the Vatican could still utilize his vast banking talents by canonizing him as the new Patron Saint of the IOR! I can hear the prayer now: "Blessed Cardinal Marcinkus save all of the Vatican's Archbishops and Cardinals AND the Vatican's money from the powers of Satan, etc..........
The IOR and Vatican's
Submitted by Jack Lane (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
The IOR and Vatican's attorney Franzo Grande Steven has made it very clear what the bank does this in this sworn statement:
decide for yourself.
Take the word of IOR's
Submitted by Jack Lane (not verified) on Feb. 20, 2012.
Take the word of IOR's attorney, here is what the IOR does in detail:
john: sounds like the mafia
Submitted by Gary Long (not verified) on Feb. 21, 2012.
john: sounds like the mafia to me! oh, that does not exist either!
The IOR is not a "notbank"
Submitted by Petrus Romanus (not verified) on Feb. 22, 2012.
The IOR is not a "notbank" but a world-class bank that is highly specialized, enabling it to fly under the radar of regulators, prosecutors, many bishops and of course the sheep.
Petrus thinks of IOR as the moral equivalent of the SuperPAC even before SCOTUS said that such were OK in these US of A. As da man from Nazareth said: Avoid worldly wealth and greed in all forms, lest you sell your soul to the evil one.
Professor Carridi, the
Submitted by jack lane (not verified) on Feb. 22, 2012.
Professor Carridi, the Vatican's expert witness, explains more about the Vatican Bank.
God and His Demons
Prometheus Books, 2010
“God and His Demons is filled with sparkling insights, sly wit, and beautiful writing of a kind we have come to expect from Michael Parenti. He strips away the virtuous pretenses of self-proclaimed religionists throughout the world, and he does it with evidence and arguments that are historically and biblically informed. A riveting read that I recommend to all.” —Julia Scheeres, author of Jesus Land
“In God and His Demons Michael Parenti spins a fascinating and compelling narrative.... ” —Tom Pollard, Professor of Social Sciences at National University, San Jose, CA
The New York Times Book Review, the Washington Post, the New York Review of Books, Harper's, the Nation, and the Antioch Review are among the many publications that have praised Parenti's work.
Michael Parenti brings his critical acumen and gifted writing skills to bear on the dark side of religion, the many evils committed in the name of godly virtue throughout history. This is not a blanket condemnation of all believers. The focus is on the threat posed by fundamentalists and theocratic reactionaries. Historically anchored and biblically informed, this eloquent indictment of organized religionís delusions and abuses will be welcomed by secular laypersons and progressive religionists alike.
Parenti delves into a wide and fascinating range of subjects:
The harsh narratives of the Old and New Testaments, from the appalling accounts of violence, draconian justice, and moral turpitude in the older books of the Bible to the latent anti-Semitism in the New Testament.
Creationism and intelligent design in both laughably crude and sophisticated forms.
The duplicities of gurus, with a revealing scrutiny of such icons as Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, various US televangelists, the Dalai Lama, and even Jesus himself.
The hypocrisies of "family-values" religionists and politicos, their rapacious financial schemes and frauds.
The sexual predation, pedophilia, and criminal cover-ups perpetrated under the cloak of religion.
The totalitarian theocratic goals of Christian and Islamic extremists, and the Shangri-La myths about feudal Old Tibet.
The growing strength of secular freethinkers and liberal theologians who are doing battle against the intolerant theocratic usurpers of public life.
Table of Contents
Part I All in the Bible
1. Up from Heaven
2. The Great Exterminator
3. The Great Abominator
4. The Other Face of Our Sweet Savior
5. Who Killed Jesus and All Those Other Jews?
Part II Divine Design?
6. Working His Blunders in Mysterious Ways
7. Jiffy Creation, Dubious Design
Part III When the Ethereal Becomes Material
8. Mother Teresa, John Paul, and the Fast-Track Saints
9. Cashing In on Heaven
10. Moneyed Gurus and Cults
Part IV Hypocrites, Reactionaries, and Vipers
11. God, Left and Right
12. The Pious Predators
13. Politicos and Other Pharisees
Part V Theocracy, Past, Present, and Future
14. Church in State
15. The Return of Totalitarian Theocracy
16. For Lords and Lamas
17. Goodbye Shangri-La
18. Secularism Rising?
Updates for May 24, 2012
May 24, 2012. (Romereports.com) (-ONLY VIDEO-) The president of the Vatican's Bank, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, reportedly resigned on Thursday, before the IOR board (Institute for Works of Religion) issued a no confidence vote against him. The Vatican released a statement on the matter, which states that the now former president, “failed to meet some highly important functions.”
At this point, the Vatican is not commenting on any specifics, but it did highlight what type of president it will look for in the near future.
“The council is looking for an excellent new president to help the Institute promote effective and comprehensive relations between the Institute and the financial community, based on mutual respect for internationally accepted banking standards.”
Catholic News Service
By Catholic News Service
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, president of the Vatican bank, was fired May 24 by the bank's board of directors, who censured him for neglecting his duties amid worsening management problems.
The board of the bank, formally known as the Institute for the Works of Religion, issued an unusually blunt statement through the Vatican Press Office, noting that members had repeatedly expressed concern to Gotti Tedeschi about the bank's "governance," but that the "situation has deteriorated further."
The statement said that the board voted to censure Gotti Tedeschi "for not having carried out various functions of primary importance to his office," but did not specify the functions in question.
Pope Benedict XVI named Gotti Tedeschi, an Italian banker and professor of financial ethics at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan, as president of the bank in 2009. The appointment was seen at the time as a move toward greater transparency in the bank's operations.
Bloomberg Business Week
By Flavia Krause-Jackson on May 24, 2012
The Vatican bank, whose reputation took a blow last year over an investigation into money laundering, has fired Chairman Ettore Gotti Tedeschi after a tenure stained by a financial scandal.
In a vote of no-confidence, the board of directors unanimously agreed to remove Tedeschi, a former Banco Santander SA (SAN) banker who took the job in 2009, from his post for failing “to carry out various duties of primary importance,” according to a statement by Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi.
The bank, which is formally called the Institute for the Works of Religion, said it’s now hunting for a replacement who can “restore” relations with the financial community. Set up in 1942 by Pope Pius XII to manage the Vatican’s finances, the bank, known by its Italian initials as the IOR, reports directly to the pope.
After barely a year in office, Tedeschi, who also teaches ethics in finance at Milan’s Catholic University, was taken by surprise when Italian prosecutors in 2010 seized 23 million euros ($29 million) from a Rome bank account registered to the IOR amid suspicions of money-laundering violations.
The Sacramento Bee
By NICOLE WINFIELD
Published: Thursday, May. 24, 2012
VATICAN CITY -- The president of the Vatican bank was effectively ousted Thursday after receiving a unanimous vote of no-confidence from bank overseers for having leaked documents and failed to do his job at a critical time in the Holy See's efforts to show transparency in its finances, the Vatican and officials said.
Ettore Gotti Tedeschi has been a polarizing figure in the Vatican ever since he was named president of the bank, known as the Institute for Religious Works, or IOR, in 2009. He is being investigated on suspicion of money laundering by Italian magistrates, but the investigation isn't believed to have factored into the decision since the Vatican considers the investigation to be motivated by outside political interests.
In a statement Thursday, the Holy See said the vote was taken because of Tedeschi's failure to fulfill the "primary functions of his office." He himself has told prosecutors that he barely paid attention to the bank's works, showing up only two days a week while tending to his primary position as head of Spain's Banco Santander's Italian unit.
President Of Vatican Bank Forced To Resign
International Business Times
By Staff Reporter
May 24, 2012
Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the president of the Institute for Works of Religion , commonly known as the Vatican Bank, has been forced to resign after the board of directors issued a no-confidence vote.
A source in the bank did not provide the reasons behind the dismissal, according to Reuters.
Father Federico Lombardi, a spokesman for the Vatican, said the Holy See, will release statement about the bank soon.
VATICAN CITY | Thu May 24, 2012
May 24 (Reuters) - Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the Italian president of the Vatican bank, has been ousted by the banks board of directors after a no-confidence vote, a senior Vatican source told Reuters on Thursday.
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, gave no details of the reasons for the no-confidence vote in Gotti Tedeschi.
News updates for June 17, 2012
Agence France-Presse June 17, 2012
ROME - The Vatican may fail to pass transparency tests next month carried out by the Council of Europe, an Italian newspaper said Sunday.
Moneyval, the Council of Europe's anti-money laundering experts, is due to rule at the beginning of July on the whether the Holy See has cleaned up its act to international monetary standards.
According to Italian daily newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano, which claims to have knowledge of the main elements of a report by the Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism, the Vatican is at risk of scoring unsatisfactory ratings for eight out of 16 "key recommendations".
It would therefore fail to be included on a "white list" of transparent states.
Pope Benedict XVI attends the Council to the Episcopal Conferences of Italy at the Vatican on May 24, 2012.
Photograph by: Osservatore Romano , ReutersPope Benedict XVI wanted better transparency for its bank, officially known as the Institute for Religious Works, which handles donations and is where some religious figures hold accounts.
In the past, suspected laundered funds, including from the mafia, have passed through the bank, giving rise to major scandals.
Italian investigators are conducting a probe into suspicious transactions.
At the end of 2010, a new institution entrusted to an Italian cardinal was created to better track obscure banking operations.
Moneyval must decide at its general meeting in Strasbourg if the Vatican bank reforms are "largely compliant", "compliant", "partially compliant", or "non compliant".
The former president of the bank, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, was forced to resign in May after he failed to clean up the image of an institution that has come to symbolise the opacity and scandal gripping the Holy See's administration.
Von Birgit Schönau
Ein italienischer Banker hängt 1982 tot unter einer Londoner Brücke. Suizid, sagt die Polizei. Mord, steht Jahre später fest. Die Spur führt in ein Dickicht aus Gangstern, Kurie und einer Geheimloge.
London, 18. Juni 1982: Es ist früh am Morgen, als Passanten unter der Blackfriars Bridge den Körper eines kleinen, korpulenten Mannes entdecken. Er baumelt an einem orangeroten Seil von einem Brückenpfeiler, seine Füße streifen fast die schmutzig-grauen Fluten der Themse. Der Mann trägt einen dunkelgrauen Anzug mit schief geknöpfter Jacke. In seinen Taschen wird man Ziegelsteine finden und eine Menge Geld. Italienische Lire, Schweizer Franken, US-Dollar, britisches Pfund zum heutigen Kurswert von fast 12 000 Euro. Keine Riesensumme für einen der wichtigsten Bankiers Italiens, aber erstaunlich viel für einen Bankrotteur. Der Mann unter der Themsebrücke ist beides.
Der italienische Konsul in London identifiziert ihn, ungeachtet des falschen Passes, mühelos als Roberto Calvi. Chef der Banco Ambrosiano und bekannt als „Bankier Gottes“ – wegen seiner Beziehungen zur Vatikanbank IOR.
Scotland Yard ist schnell mit Calvi fertig: ein Selbstmörder. Die italienische Polizei hat zunächst nichts gegen die These einzuwenden, dass sich ein 62-jähriger, nicht besonders sportlicher Mann mit sechs Kilo schweren Steinen am Körper vom Pfeiler der gewaltigen Brücke der Schwarzen Brüder herunterlässt, ohne dass dabei auch nur ein Stäubchen auf seinen Anzug fällt. Erst zehn Jahre später werden in Rom Ermittlungen wegen Mordverdachts eingeleitet, noch mehr Zeit vergeht, bis 1998 Roberto Calvis Leiche exhumiert wird. Eindeutig Mord, sagen jetzt die Experten. Ein Mord ohne Mörder, befinden die Richter. Zuletzt urteilt 2010 ein römisches Schwurgericht, der Bankier sei zweifellos getötet worden.
Von wem, das verliert sich im Dunkel der Geschichte, wahrscheinlich war Calvis Killer ein inzwischen verstorbener Mann der neapolitanischen Camorra. Es gab einen zweiten mysteriösen Tod, nur Stunden, bevor Roberto Calvi starb: Seine 55-jährige Sekretärin stürzte aus dem Fenster ihres Büros in der Mailänder Zentrale der Banco Ambrosiano. Selbstmord, befanden die Ermittler – schließlich hatte die Frau einen Abschiedsbrief hinterlassen. Darin hieß es: „Roberto Calvi sei verdammt in alle Ewigkeit, für das, was er uns angetan hat.“
Das sahen Calvis Mörder wohl ganz genauso. Die Anklage im letzten Prozess um den Toten von der Blackfriars Bridge ging davon aus, dass die sizilianische Mafia Cosa Nostra den Bankier ausschalten ließ. Die Gründe für den Mord an Calvi seien drei gewesen. Erstens: Der Chef der Banco Ambrosiano habe mit der Pleite zu viel Geld der Cosa Nostra „verbrannt“. Zweitens: Die Mafia musste befürchten, dass durch die Ermittlungen im Zuge des Bankrotts ihre Transaktionen aufflogen. Drittens: Calvis Ermordung war ein Signal für weitere „Geschäftspartner“. Unmissverständlich heißt es in der Urteilsbegründung: „Cosa Nostra nutzte die Banco Ambrosiano und das IOR als Stationen für große Geldwäsche-Operationen.“
Doch damit ist das letzte Wort nicht gesprochen. Noch immer wartet die italienische Justiz auf die Aufklärung der Hintergründe der Affäre Calvi. Eine Anfrage an den Vatikan um Amtshilfe läuft nun schon seit über zwei Jahren. Doch der Kirchenstaat kann sich nicht entschließen, jene Dokumente herauszurücken, die Licht in den größten Finanzskandal seiner jüngsten Geschichte bringen könnten.
Roberto Calvi ist schon längst ein Gespenst geworden. Ein Gespenst, das immer wieder dann auftaucht, wenn es um mysteriöse Beziehungen zwischen Kirche, Hochfinanz, Politik und Mafia geht. Und das in einem Atemzug genannt wird mit seinen Geschäftspartnern Michele Sindona und Erzbischof Paul Marcinkus, dem Chef der Vatikanbank und Hauptaktionär der Banco Ambrosiano. Ohne Sindona und Marcinkus wäre Calvi nicht zu einem der bedeutendsten Bankiers Italiens aufgestiegen, ohne sie wäre er womöglich nicht in den Strudel finsterer Machenschaften geraten, die ihn zuerst in den Bankrott führten und dann zu seinem gewaltsamen Ende.
Es ist ein Stoff für abenteuerliche Mutmaßungen und Legenden. Besonders im Ausland, wo Mafia und Vatikan den exotischen Nimbus archaischer, verschwiegener und deshalb geheimnisvoller Männergesellschaften besitzen. Und wo der Bund von Verbrecherpaten und Kirchenmännern skandalös und faszinierend zugleich wirken muss. Faszinierend wie der Spitzname, der Roberto Calvi bereits zu Lebzeiten verpasst wurde: Bankier Gottes. Dabei war und ist die Vatikanbank IOR, das 1942 gegründete Istituto per le Opere di Religione (Institut für religiöse Werke), keineswegs die Bank Gottes, sondern das Geldhaus des kleinsten Staates der Welt, eingerichtet mit den 80 Millionen Dollar Entschädigungszahlung, die das faschistische Italien nach den Lateranverträgen leistete.
Die IOR gehört zum Vatikan, verwaltet aber nicht das Vermögen des Kirchenstaates, sondern das Geld von Vatikanangestellten, Kurienmitgliedern und Diplomaten. Geleitet wird sie von einem fünfköpfigen Laiengremium – die Mitglieder werden von einer Kardinals-Kommission ausgewählt. Schlagzeilen machte die IOR zuletzt Ende Mai, als ihr bisheriger Chef Ettore Gotti Tedeschi nach drei Jahren im Amt fristlos entlassen wurde. Er habe seine Pflichten als Bankier nicht zufriedenstellend erfüllt, erklärte das Aufsichtsgremium. Gotti Tedeschi gab zurück, er zahle den Preis dafür, dass er das 2011 von Benedikt XVI. erlassene Anti-Geldwäsche-Gesetz verteidigt habe. Dieses Gesetz wurde gegen den erklärten Willen des früheren IOR-Chefs inzwischen modifiziert. Verwässert, wie Gotti Tedeschi moniert. Verbessert, wie die Revisoren versichern. Im Juli wird der zuständige OSZE-Ausschuss feststellen, wer recht hat, dann entscheidet sich, ob der Vatikan in die „White List“ jener Länder aufgenommen wird, die Geldwäsche gesetzlich verfolgen.
Die IOR steht im Telefonbuch des Vatikans, man kann also einfach anrufen. Es antwortet der Pförtner – und der sagt im breiten römischen Dialekt: „Wen auch immer Sie hier sprechen wollen, es wird Ihnen niemand antworten.“ Diese Erfahrung haben auch jene römischen Staatsanwälte gemacht, die im Mai 2010 ein Ermittlungsverfahren gegen die IOR und zehn italienische Banken eröffneten. Es geht um eine Summe von 180 Millionen Euro, die mithilfe der Vatikanbank am italienischen Fiskus vorbeitransferiert worden sein sollen. Die Ermittler stießen sehr schnell an ihre Grenzen: an die dicken Mauern des Kirchenstaates. Im September 2010 beschlagnahmten sie indes 23 Millionen Euro, die auf den Namen der IOR auf ein Konto der römischen Credito Artigiano eingegangen waren. Gegen Ettore Gotti Tedeschi wurde ein Verfahren eingeleitet. Der Vatikan protestierte offiziell: „Der Heilige Stuhl zeigt sich erstaunt über die Initiative der römischen Staatsanwaltschaft.“ Die Augenbrauen hochziehen, statt die Karten offenzulegen – dieses Gebaren hat im Kirchenstaat eine lange Tradition. Die 23 Millionen wurden von der italienischen Justiz wieder freigegeben.
Das Mysterium ist der Kirche wesenseigen, nur Protestanten können auf die Idee kommen, mit den Männern der Kurie exakt abrechnen zu wollen. Denn im Vatikan weiß man genau, dass Transparenz nur ein anderes Wort für Machtverlust ist. Wenn man selbst nur die Maßstäbe hoch genug ansetzt, muss man sich nicht von den anderen kontrollieren lassen, nach dieser Maxime funktioniert die geschlossene Gesellschaft im Schatten der Peterskirche. „Wo ich mein Geld investiere, ist eine Entscheidung, die nicht außerhalb meiner Ethik stehen darf“, antwortete der geschasste Gotti Tedeschi auf die – schriftlich gestellte – Frage nach dem Moralkonto der IOR. „Das bedeutet, unsere Investitionen dürfen nicht gegen die Moral wirken.“ Eine reichlich nebulöse Antwort.
Immerhin, ein Fall Marcinkus dürfte sich nicht wiederholen. Der Kleriker hatte die IOR durch seine amoralischen Geldgeschäfte in die Vorhölle gestürzt. Als Hauptaktionär der Banco Ambrosiano war die Vatikanbank 1984 in den Prozess um den Bankrott verwickelt, erreichte aber in einem Vergleich, von der anvisierten Milliarde Dollar nur ein Viertel an die Gläubiger zahlen zu müssen. Ohne Schuldanerkenntnis, natürlich. Ein vierter Mann war damals an der Bankenpleite beteiligt: Licio Gelli, der Maestro Venerabile (verehrungswürdige Meister) der berüchtigten Geheimloge Propaganda Due. In Gellis P2 fanden sich Militärs und Mafiosi, Paten und Politiker, kurzum: alle diejenigen, die am Gedeihen des italienischen Rechtsstaats nicht das geringste Interesse hatten. Auch Silvio Berlusconi war P2-Mitglied, ebenso wie Calvi und Sindona. Gelli ist der einzige Banco-Ambrosiano-Akteur, der heute noch lebt. Er ist 93 Jahre alt und schweigt eiserner als jeder Kurienkardinal. Dabei könnte Gelli viel erzählen über die verhängnisvolle Männerfreundschaft zweier Finanzjongleure. Eine Freundschaft, die für beide tödlich endete.
Michele Sindona und Roberto Calvi waren gleichaltrig, beide wurden 1920 geboren. Ansonsten hatten sie kaum etwas gemein. Denn während der aus kleinbürgerlichen Verhältnissen stammende Norditaliener Calvi sich mit Fleiß und Anpassungsfähigkeit vom Angestellten zum Chef der Banco Ambrosiano hocharbeitete, eroberte der bettelarme Sizilianer Sindona mit Charme, Chuzpe und Skrupellosigkeit von Mailand aus die internationale Finanzwelt. Sindona arbeitete zunächst als Steuerberater, bevor er eine Finanzgesellschaft nach der anderen gründete, seine Banken schließlich zur „Banca Privata Italiana“ fusionieren ließ und damit der führenden Geschäftsbank „Mediobanca“ Konkurrenz machte.
Woher das Geld kam, das Sindona so traumwandlerisch sicher vermehrte, war schon damals kein Geheimnis: Der Finanzjongleur galt als Gewährsmann der sizilianischen Mafia. Gleichzeitig pflegte er beste Beziehungen in Kirchenkreisen, allen voran zum Mailänder Erzbischof Giovanni Montini, dem späteren Papst Paul VI. Der Politiker Giulio Andreotti bezeichnete Sindona als „Retter der Lira“, das US-Magazin „Time“ behauptete gar, er sei der erfolgreichste Italiener seit Mussolini. Unwiderstehlich und undurchsichtig – von Sindona konnte Roberto Calvi eine Menge lernen. Vor allem dies: Die Schwachstellen des feudalistisch organisierten italienischen Bankensystems nutzen für die eigenen Eroberungsfeldzüge. Und sich mit Geld zweifelhafter Herkunft jede Menge Macht erobern, sich Politiker und Kirchenleute gefällig machen, die ihrerseits Sitz und Stimme in den Geldinstituten haben.
Zunächst gefiel Sindona der wissbegierige und bescheidene Juniorpartner. Er brachte ihm bei, wie man mit raffinierter Verschachtelungstaktik ein Imperium schaffen konnte. Gegenseitig verkauften sie sich mit Gewinn Unternehmensbeteiligungen, sie arbeiteten zusammen, bis sich der Sizilianer hoffnungslos verzockte. Als 1974 Sindonas New Yorker „Franklin National Bank“, eines der 20 größten Geldhäuser der USA, pleiteging, zog sich auch im Vaterland die Schlinge für ihn zusammen. Aus dem Finanzgenie wurde der Bankrotteur, der nach und nach alles verlor und schließlich 1979 seinen Insolvenzverwalter ermorden ließ. Er selbst sollte später an einem mit Zyankali vergifteten Espresso in seiner Gefängniszelle sterben.
Sindonas Nachfolger als größter Finanzjongleur im Land stand schnell fest: Roberto Calvi. Er war nicht nur an die Spitze der Banco Ambrosiano gerückt, er hatte auch die Beziehungen zum Vatikan verstärkt. Gemeinsam mit Monsignor Marcinkus gründete er 1971 auf den Bahamas die „Cisalpina Overseas Nassau Bank“, die sich später in „Banco Ambrosiano Overseas“ umbenannte und im Mittelpunkt von Geldwäsche-Ermittlungen stand. Marcinkus war auch in die Gründung immer neuer Filialen und Finanzholdings mit Fantasienamen wie „Setomor“ und „Zitropo“ eingeweiht, die Calvi ins Leben rief, um ungeheure Geldsummen für Mafiosi zu waschen.
Es sollte noch eine Weile dauern, bis auch Calvi sich verrannte. 1981 wurde er in Mailand zu vier Jahren Haft verurteilt, weil er 27 Milliarden Lire ohne Genehmigung ins Ausland geschafft hatte. Die Strafe wurde jedoch wieder aufgehoben. 1982, wenige Tage bevor der Bankier nach London abtauchte, betrug der Schuldenberg seines Geldhauses 1,5 Milliarden Dollar. „Für die Zukunft rufen wir vertrauensvoll den Schutz des Höchsten an, dessen wir in Dankbarkeit gedenken.“ Mit dieser Formel hatte Calvi stets seine Bilanzberichte geschlossen. Als er Mailand verließ, war er schon schutzlos seinen Mördern ausgeliefert.
„Calvi war schwach. Er war am Ende“, berichtete viele Jahre nach dem Mord an der Themse der Mafia-Kronzeuge Francesco Di Carlo. Er selbst hätte nach dem Willen der Cosa Nostra den Mord ausführen sollen, Di Carlo arbeitete als Gewährsmann der Sizilianer in London unter dem vielversprechenden Decknamen „Frankie der Würger“. Den Richtern sagte Di Carlo: „Am 16. Juni 1982 rief mich ein Freund aus Sizilien an, um mir auszurichten, dass der Boss Pippo Calò mich suche. Es gebe da etwas, was ich für ihn erledigen solle. Als ich Calò Tage später endlich sprechen konnte, sagte er: Mach dir keine Sorgen, das Problem wurde schon gelöst.“ Das Problem war Roberto Calvi.
Der Erzbischof Paul Marcinkus war Chef der Vatikanbank und Hauptaktionär der „Banco Ambrosiano“.
Zu der Geheimorganisation „Propaganda Due“ gehörte neben Roberto Calvi auch der junge
Dem Autohändler Flavio Carboni wurde der Calvi- Mord angelastet. Er wurde freigesprochen.
Mafia, murder and the Vatican
By Birgit Schönau
An Italian banker in London is 1982 dead under a bridge. Suicide, says the police. Murder, is set years later. The trail leads into a maze of gangsters, and a secret society curia.
London, 18 June 1982: It's early in the morning, as passers-by discovered the body of Blackfriars Bridge, a small, stout man. It dangles from an orange rope from a bridge pier, his feet almost lap the dirty-gray waters of the Thames. The man is wearing a dark gray suit with jacket buttoned wrong. In his pockets will be found bricks and a lot of money. Italian lira, Swiss franc, U.S. dollar, British pound to the current market value of almost 12 000 €. No king's ransom for one of the most important bankers in Italy, but an amazing amount for a bankrupt. The man under the Thames Bridge is both.
The Italian consul in London, identified him, despite the false passport, easily as Roberto Calvi. Head of Banco Ambrosiano and known as "God's banker" - because of its relations with the Vatican Bank IOR.Scotland Yard is quickly done with Calvi: a suicide. The Italian police have initially not opposed to the proposition that a 62-year-old, not particularly athletic man with six-pound stones down the body leaves the pillars of the huge bridge in the Black brothers, without it falling even a speck of dust on his suit . It was not until ten years later in Rome launched an investigation on suspicion of murder, even more time goes by, Roberto Calvi's body and 1998, is exhumed. Clearly murder, now the experts say. A murder without a murderer are the judges. Finally in 2010 a Roman jury verdict, the banker had been killed without doubt.By whom, lost in the mists of time, probably was a now-deceased husband Calvi killer of the Neapolitan Camorra. There was a second mysterious death, just hours before Roberto Calvi died: his 55-year-old secretary rushed out of the window of her office at the Milan headquarters of the Banco Ambrosiano. Suicide, were the investigators - after the woman had left a suicide note. It said: "Roberto Calvi was damned for eternity for what he did to us."The Calvi's murder looked every bit as well. The prosecution at the last trial of the dead from the Blackfriars Bridge was assumed that the Sicilian Cosa Nostra mafia let off the banker. The reasons for the murder of Calvi were three. First, the head of Banco Ambrosiano had "burned" with the bankruptcy of a lot of money to the Cosa Nostra. Second: The Mafia had feared, that flew through the course of the investigation into their bankruptcy transactions. Third, Calvi murder of a signal for other "business partner" was. Clearly stated in the verdict: "Cosa Nostra took advantage of the Banco Ambrosiano and the IOR as stations for large money-laundering operations."But that's not the last word is spoken. Still waiting for the Italian justice system to elucidate the background to the affair Calvi. Message to the Vatican for assistance has been going on for over two years. But the Papal States can not bring himself to come out the documents that could shed light on the biggest financial scandal of its recent history.Roberto Calvi, has already become a ghost. A ghost that appears again and again, when it comes to mysterious relationship between the church, high finance, politics and the mafia. And this is on a par with its business partners Michele Sindona and Archbishop Paul Marcinkus, the head of the Vatican Bank and main shareholder of Banco Ambrosiano. Sindona and Calvi without Marcinkus would not become one of the most important bankers in Italy, without it he might not be in the vortex of sinister machinations come, first led him into bankruptcy and then to his violent end.It is a substance for adventurous speculation and legend. Especially abroad, where mafia and the Vatican have the exotic aura of archaic, secretive and therefore more mysterious men societies. And where the covenant of criminal godfathers and churchmen must scandalous and fascinating look at the same time. Fascinating as the nickname of Roberto Calvi has been missed in life: God's banker. It was and is the Vatican Bank IOR, which was founded in 1942 the Istituto per le Opere Tues Religione (Institute for Religious Works), not the bank of God, but the financial institution of the smallest state in the world, set up with the 80 million dollars in compensation payments, the Fascist Italy contributed to the Lateran Pacts.The IOR is administered to the Vatican, but not the assets of the Papal States, but the money of Vatican employees, Curia members and diplomats. It is led by a five-member lay board - the members are selected by a cardinal's commission. The IOR has made headlines recently in late May, when her boss Ettore Gotti Tedeschi previous three years in office dismissed without notice. He had fulfilled his duties as a banker is not satisfactory, said the oversight board. Gotti Tedeschi replied that he pays the price for being the 2011 by Benedict XVI. enacted anti-money laundering law was defended. This law has been modified from the declared will of the former IOR leaders now. Diluted, as Gotti Tedeschi complains. Improved, as the auditors warrant. In July, will determine the appropriate OSCE committee, who is right, then decides whether the Vatican will be included in the "white list" of countries that pursue money laundering law.The IOR is in the phone book of the Vatican, you can call so simple. It responds to the doorman - and says the broad Roman dialect. "Whoever you are talking about want to answer you no one is" This experience has made even those Roman magistrates, in May 2010 an investigation into the IOR and ten Italian banks opened. To have been transferred passes it to a sum of 180 million €, with the help of the Vatican Bank at the Italian Treasury. The investigators came very quickly reach their limits: the thick walls of the Papal States. In September 2010, they seized 23 million euros, however, were received on behalf of the IOR into an account of the Roman Credito Artigiano. Ettore Gotti Tedeschi against proceedings have been initiated. The Vatican officially protested: ". The Holy See is astonished at the initiative of the Roman prosecutor" to pull the eyebrows instead of disclosing the cards - this behavior has a long tradition in the Papal States. The 23 million have been approved by the Italian judiciary again.The mystery is intrinsic to the Church, Protestants can only come up with the idea that men want to settle exactly the Curia. After the Vatican we know for sure that transparency is just another word for power loss. If you own only the standards high enough attaches, one does not have control of the others can, by this maxim, the private party does in the shadow of St. Peter. "Where can I invest my money, is a decision that should not be outside of my ethics," the ousted Gotti Tedeschi responded to - in writing asked - question about the moral account of IOR. "This does not affect our investments allowed against morality." A lot nebulous answer.After all, a case Marcinkus would not be repeated. The cleric, the IOR was overthrown by his amoral financial transactions in limbo. As a major shareholder in Banco Ambrosiano, the Vatican Bank in 1984 was involved in the process of bankruptcy, but reached in a comparison of the targeted pay only a quarter billion dollars to creditors to have. Without acknowledgment of debt, of course. A fourth man was then involved in the bank failure: Licio Gelli, the Venerable Maestro (Venerable Master) of the notorious secret lodge Propaganda Due. Gellis P2 were found in military and gangsters, godfathers and politicians, in short, all those who were not in the prosperity of the Italian law the slightest interest. Even Silvio Berlusconi was P2 member, as Calvi and Sindona. Gelli is the only actor in Banco Ambrosiano, who is still living. He is 93 years old and silent iron than any cardinal. It Gelli could tell a lot about the fateful friendship of two men financial jugglers. A friendship that ended fatally for both.Michele Sindona and Roberto Calvi was the same age, both were born in 1920. Otherwise, they had little in common. For while the native of middle-class family from northern Italy Calvi worked his way up through hard work and adaptability of employees to the head of Banco Ambrosiano, the conquered Sicilians Sindona destitute of charm, chutzpah and unscrupulousness of Milan from the international financial community. Sindona worked as a tax adviser before making a financial company after another started to merge its banks on to the "Banca Privata Italiana," and had made it the leading commercial bank "Mediobanca" competition.Where the money came the Sindona Sun uncanny instinct was increased, even then, no secret: The financial juggling was considered a guarantor of the Sicilian Mafia. At the same time he cultivated excellent relationships in church circles, especially the Archbishop Giovanni Montini of Milan, who later became Pope Paul VI. The politician Giulio Andreotti Sindona designated as the "savior of the lira," the U.S. magazine "Time" even claimed that he was the most successful Italian since Mussolini. Irresistible and impenetrable - from Sindona was able to learn a lot Roberto Calvi. Above all this: the weaknesses of the Italian banking system organized feudal use for its own conquest. And conquer with money of dubious origin plenty of power, politicians and church people make pleasing, in turn, have a seat and voice in the financial institutions.Sindona initially liked the inquisitive and humble junior partner. He taught him how one could create an empire with a sophisticated Verschachtelungstaktik. Mutually they sold at a profit corporate interests, they worked together until the Sicilians gambled hopeless. In 1974 New York Sindonas "Franklin National Bank," one of the 20 largest U.S. financial houses went bankrupt, moved, even in the fatherland, the noose for him. From the financial genius, the bankrupt, who gradually lost everything and murder in 1979, finally had its insolvency. He would later die of a poisoned with cyanide espresso in his prison cell.Sindonas successor as the largest financial juggler in the country was quickly Roberto Calvi. He was moved not only to the top of the Banco Ambrosiano, he had also strengthened relations with the Vatican. Together with Monsignor Marcinkus he founded in 1971 to the Bahamas' Nassau Cisalpine Overseas Bank ", which later changed its name to" Banco Ambrosiano Overseas "and the focus of money laundering were investigating. Marcinkus was always dedicated to the establishment of new branches and financial holding companies with fancy names like "Setomor" and "Zitropo" that Calvi was starting to wash huge amounts of money for mobsters.It would take a while to even be verrannte Calvi. In 1981, he was in Milan sentenced to four years in prison because he had made 27 billion lire without approval abroad. The sentence was lifted. 1982, a few days before the banker ducked to London, was the debt of his money home $ 1.5 billion. "For the future we call confidence in the protection of the Most High, whom we remember with gratitude." With this formula, Calvi had always closed his balance reports. When he left Milan, he had already delivered defenseless to his murderers."Calvi was weak. He was at the end, "reported many years after the murder of the Mafia witness of the Thames Francesco Di Carlo. He should have the will to carry out the murder of the Cosa Nostra, Di Carlo worked as a guarantor of the Sicilians in London under the promising code-named "Frankie the Strangler". The judges said Di Carlo: "On 16 June 1982 I called a friend from Sicily to align me that the boss Pippo me Calò search. There's something I should do for him. When I finally was able to speak Calò days later, he said: Do not worry, the problem was already solved "the problem was Roberto Calvi..PARTNERThe Archbishop Paul Marcinkus was head of the Vatican Bank and main shareholder of the "Banco Ambrosiano."LODGE BROTHERTo the secret organization "Propaganda Due" was next to Roberto Calvi, the youngSilvio Berlusconi.SUSPICIOUSCar dealer Flavio Carboni has been blamed on the Calvi murder. He was acquitted.
National Catholic Reporter
Jun. 15, 2012
By Kimberly Winston, Religion News Service
How much money does the U.S. government forgo by not taxing religious institutions? According to a University of Tampa professor, perhaps as much as $71 billion a year.
Ryan Cragun, an assistant professor of sociology, and two students examined U.S. tax laws to estimate the total cost of tax exemptions for religious institutions -- on property, donations, business enterprises, capital gains and "parsonage allowances," which permit clergy to deduct housing costs.
Their article appears in the current issue of Free Inquiry magazine, published by the Council for Secular Humanism, an organization of nontheists. U.S. tax law grants religious groups and other nonprofits the exemptions because of their charitable nature.
And while the authors do not claim theirs is a comprehensive or unbiased appraisal, their findings have raised eyebrows in the nontheist community, which has long sought to eliminate the tax exemptions on the grounds that they unfairly favor religious institutions.
By Fiona Ehlers, Alexander Smoltczyk and Peter Wensierski
The mood at the Vatican is apocalyptic. Pope Benedict XVI seems tired, and both unable and unwilling to seize the reins amid fierce infighting and scandal. While Vatican insiders jockey for power and speculate on his successor, Joseph Ratzinger has withdrawn to focus on his still-ambiguous legacy.
Finally, there is clarity. The Holy See has cleared things up and made the document accessible to all: a handout on checking whether apparitions of the Virgin Mary are authentic.
Everything will be much easier from now on. The Roman Catholic Church has taken a step forward.
This "breaking news" from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) reveals the kinds of issues the Vatican is concerned with -- and the kind of world in which some there live. It's a world in which the official Church investigation of Virgin Mary sightings is carefully regulated while cardinals in the Roman Curia, the Vatican's administrative and judicial apparatus, wield power with absolutely no checks and the pope's private correspondence turns up in the desk drawers of a butler.
It's a completely different apparition of the Virgin Mary that has pulled the Vatican and the Catholic Church into a new crisis, whose end and impact can only be surmised: the appearance of a source in the heart of the Church, a conspiracy against the pope and a leak code-named "Maria."
By Eamonn McCann
Friday, 15 June 2012
Springsteen is more popular than Jesus. The Italian-Irish troubadour from New Jersey who still comes on with bags of cred after more than 30 years on the road has sold out two shows at Dublin's RDS arena next month.
Some of the reasons for the poor turnout are obvious. The credibility of the Church has taken a hammering from the exposure of the extent of its cover-up of the crime spree against children.
The general secularisation of Irish society. The fact that Séan Brady is no match for Peter Aiken when it comes to promoting a gig. The football in Poznan.
Even so. This was no mere Rosary rally but a gathering-in of the Catholic faithful of Ireland to bear witness to the core belief and defining doctrine of the Church, the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. And they didn't pack the pews.
That is, forced by the pope to leave their posts for immoral acts, administrative faults, or other serious violations. They number in the dozens. Their names have disappeared from the Annuario Pontificio. Here they are
VATICAN CITY, June 15, 2012 – The old-timers of the curia remember a quip that one cardinal loved to repeat: "Among the apostles one out of twelve betrayed, and today among the successors of the apostles the average is certainly no better."
Today, without counting the other Christian denominations, the Catholic bishops who are the heirs of the apostles number about 5200, and so by applying to them this "evangelical" proportion, there should be more than 400 emulators of Judas Iscariot in the Church of Rome. A figure that may be too optimistic in the eyes of the Lefebvrists, or from the opposite perspective, of the progressive ecclesial galaxy, but certainly much higher than the number of prelates who in various ways have been punished in recent years by the only person who has this power, the pope.
There are no complete statistics in this regard, in part because beyond the most spectacular cases, it normally happens that a bishop who is asked to leave the leadership of a diocese for doctrinal or moral reasons, or because of ecclesiastical or administrative mismanagement, is convinced to hand in his resignation to the pope before reaching the retirement age of 75, on the basis of paragraph 2 of canon 401 of the code of canon law, which states: "A diocesan bishop who has become less able to fulfill his office because of ill health or some other grave cause is earnestly requested to present his resignation from office." And the pope accepts his resignation very quickly.
Normally, this paragraph 2 of canon 401 concerns churchmen afflicted by physical or psychological "ill health," but there is no lack of cases of "other grave cause."
John L.Allen Jr.Pied Piper of John Paul II deceives Catholics with his essay Fast-Track Saint in Newsweek -- with Vatican lunacy & Satanic timeline http://jp2army.blogspot.com/