The Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See is the institutional Body in charge of the economic policy and planning, as well as of the supervision and control of the Administrations of the Holy See or those that make reference to it, whatever their autonomy may be (see Pastor Bonus, art. 176).
This Office carries out its functions through the following activities:
A. Examination of the budgets and financial statements of the Administrations mentioned in art. 176 of the Pastor Bonus;
B. Revision, compilation and drafting of the budgets and consolidated financial statements of the Holy See; examination and review of the budgets and financial statements of the Governorate of the Vatican City State, classified into sectors of activity.
C. Consultations and advise concerning, in particular, acts of extraordinary administration and alienation or equivalent documents.
D. Administrative inspections and checks.
As usual, in 2011 the Prefecture audited all the entities falling within the consolidation area of the Holy See (Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, Vatican Radio, Vatican Publishing House-L'Osservatore Romano, Vatican Library, Vatican Television Centre, Apostolic Camera) and of the VCS Governorate.
Moreover, the Prefecture prepared the 2010 Consolidated Financial Statements of the Holy See and the Financial Statement of the VCS Governorate. These documents were certified by an external audit company which issued a report without objections (clear opinion). The documentation under discussion was then examined by the International Auditors of the Prefecture (on June 14, 2011) as well as by the “Council of Cardinals for the Study of the Organizational and Economic Problems of the Holy See” in the meeting of June 30 and July 1st, 2011.
In September, the Prefecture decided to transmit the summary of the 2010 Consolidated Financial Statements of the Holy See to the Papal Nuncios, to the Apostolic Conferences, to the General Moderators of the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life of pontifical right.
In autumn the 2012 Consolidated Budget of the Holy See and that of the VCS Governorate were prepared. Both these documents were examined by the International Auditors on December 14, 2011, approved by the Plenary Assembly of the Prefecture on January 11, 2012 and by the “Council of Cardinals for the Study of the Organizational and Economic Problems of the Holy See” on February 14 and 15, 2012.
As usual, during the year 2011 the 2010 financial statements of the Entities of the Holy See and of the Bodies that make reference to it were examined. These documents were sent to the Secretary of State, accompanied by an “Office Note” containing the opinion of the Prefecture and all the technical elements needed to give reasons for the expressed opinion.
The same job was carried out for the 2012 budgets.
Moreover, the Prefecture gave its advice about single management issues concerning financial, real estate and legal matters by expressing opinions and proposals in this regard.
On 21st September 2011, the Holy Father accepted the resignation of the then President of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, His Eminence Card. Velasio De Paolis, who reached the age limit. His Excellency the most Reverend Msgr. Giuseppe VERSALDI, former Bishop of Alexandria, was appointed new President. For a few months, he performed the task of Apostolic Administrator of the above-mentioned Diocese.
On the same day, since the post of Secretary had been vacant for a long time, the Rev. Lucio Ángel VALLEJO BALDA was appointed to hold this position. He was a clergyman of the Diocese of Astorga, where he had been Diocesan Accountant for more than twenty years.
The new Superiors started their service on 5th October 2011.
On 8th November 2011 the Prefecture warmly welcomed His Eminence Card. Tarcisio Bertone, who appointed the new Secretary as Prelate of Honour.
On 30th June 2011 the Holy Father appointed the Maltese Dr. Joseph F. X. Zahra as International Auditor ad triennium (for a three-year period).
On 12th July 2011 the Holy Father appointed Fabio Marenda, Pasquale D'Agostino, Gianluca Piredda and Maria Rita Sanguigni as Consultants ad quinquennium (for a five-year period). On the same day a card of appreciation was sent to the former Consultants whose mandate had expired after reaching the age limit or the maximum number of mandates to be assigned. These are: His Excellency the Most Reverend Msgr. Franco Croci, the former Secretary of this Prefecture; Francesco Silvano; Pier Giuseppe Magnani; Giampietro Nattino; Ettore Quadrani; Edoardo Boitani; Pietro Fatello; Giovambattista Santucci; Walter M. Bonino.
On 25th November 2012, the Holy Father confirmed as Consultants the following people: Dr. Antonio M. Chiminello, for another five years, and Dr. Ivan Ruggiero, the former Accountant General of this Prefecture, until reaching the age of 80.
In 2011 the work of drafting and review of the new Regulations of the Prefecture was carried out. The previous Regulations dated back to 1999 and needed to be brought up to date in consideration of both the change in the socio-economic conditions and the wish to provide for a service that could answer, even more precisely, what required by the letter and by the spirit of the laws in force.
As soon as these Regulations will be approved, they will be sent to all the administrations “sub umbra Petri”, so that they can look over them and acquire useful information to properly carry out their administrative tasks.