Secretariat for the Economy

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The Secretariat for the Economy (Italian: Segreteria per l'economia) is a dicastery of the Roman Curia with authority over all economic activities of the Holy See and the Vatican City State.[1]


Pope Francis established the secretariat in a motu proprio, Fidelis dispensator et prudens, published on 24 February 2014. It is headed by a prefect–originally a cardinal–who reports directly to the Pope.[2] It is, after the Secretariat of State, the second dicastery named a secretariat, an indication of its importance relative to other parts of the Curia.[3] The seat of the secretariat is in Saint John's Tower in the Vatican Gardens.[4]

Cardinal George Pell, Archbishop of Sydney, was named the secretariat's first Prefect and "asked to start work as soon as possible".[5] Pell said he would begin work at the Vatican "by the end of March."[6] The Pope also announced the formation of a Council for the Economy to set policy guidelines for the secretariat and analyze its work. The council comprises eight cardinals or bishops and seven lay persons "with strong professional financial experience," chosen so that the body represents the global church. These members were named on 8 March.[5][7] The council was headed by a Cardinal Reinhard Marx as coordinator.[8] On 5 June 2015, Pope Francis appointed Libero Milone as Auditor General.[8][9]

A meeting of the Council for the Economy was held in September 2014 to discuss the statutes of the new secretariat. The council also discussed the transfer of responsibilities from the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See to the Secretariat for the Economy and the criteria for establishing a budgeting system.[10]

On 3 March 2014, Pope Francis appointed Monsignor Alfred Xuereb as the first General Secretary of the Secretariat.[11] Xuereb later left this post in February 2018.[12] On 22 March, Pope Francis appointed Monsignor Brian Ferme, an Australian-born jurist and head of the St. Pius X Faculty of Canon Law in Venice, as the first Prelate Secretary of the Council that oversees the Secretariat.[13]

In a motu proprio issued on 9 July 2014 the responsibilities of the Secretariat for the Economy were extended considerably, since it decreed that the Ordinary Section of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See (APSA) is to be transferred to the Secretariat,[14] giving the latter control over purchasing and human resources.[15]

In April 2021, a motu proprio mandated that certain senior Vatican appointees provide transparent information regarding their personal finances.[16]

Both the Secretariat and Council were given formal status in February 2015.[17]

On 5 June 2022, as provided for in the apostolic constitution Praedicate evangelium which took effect in that day,[18] Prefect Juan Antonio Guerrero Alves notified the other Curial departments that he was creating within his Secretariat a Directorate for Human Resources to manage the human resources functions of the Roman Curia.[19]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "New Coordination Structure for the Economic and Administrative Affairs of the Holy See and Vatican City State". Holy See Press Office. 24 February 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  2. ^ a b Reese, Thomas (24 February 2014). "Cardinal Pell is new Vatican financial watchdog". National Catholic Reporter. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
  3. ^ Allen Jr., John L. (25 February 2014). "Financial reform shows crafty political side of pope". Boston Globe. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
  4. ^ Andrea Gagliarducci (3 March 2014). "Pope Francis observes, judges, and acts. And begins establishing a parallel Curia". MondayVatican. Retrieved 3 March 2014.
  5. ^ a b "Australian Cardinal to head new Vatican Secretariat for Economy". 24 February 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  6. ^ Rocca, Francis X. (24 February 2014). "Pope establishes panel, with lay members, to oversee Vatican finances". Catholic News Service. Archived from the original on 9 January 2015. Retrieved 25 February 2014.
  7. ^ "Commento al Comunicato sulla Nomina dei Membri del Comnsiglio per l'Economia del Derettore della Sala Stampa, Rev.Do P. Federico Lombardi, S.I., 08.03.2014" (Press release) (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. 8 March 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  8. ^ a b "Motu proprio "Fidelis dispensator et prudens" for the Management of the Economic Assets of the Holy See". Vatican Information Service. Archived from the original on 2 March 2014. Retrieved 26 February 2014.
  9. ^ "Rinunce e nomine, 05.06.2015" (Press release) (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Meeting of Vatican Council for the Economy Ends". Zenit. 5 September 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  11. ^ Tornielli, Andrea (3 March 2014). "Francis appoints Fr. Xuereb as secretary general of the Vatican's new economy secretariat". Vatican Insider. Retrieved 3 March 2014.
  12. ^ Tornielli, Andrea (23 February 2018). "Two new nuncios from the Roman Curia, Xuereb leaves the Secretariat for the Economy". La Stampa. Retrieved 28 February 2019.
  13. ^ Mickens, Robert. "Vatican's New Finance Expert is a Man of Myster". Global pulse magazine. Archived from the original on 13 September 2016. Retrieved 13 August 2016.
  14. ^ "New Economic Framework for the Holy See". Vatican Information Service. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  15. ^ John L. Allen Jr. (9 July 2014). "After scandals, Vatican aims to be model on finances". Boston Globe. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  17. ^ Cardinal Pell's Vatican economy office gets new statutes
  18. ^ Pope Francis. "Praedicate Evangelium, sulla Curia Romana e il suo servizio alla Chiesa nel Mondo (19 marzo 2022)". Dicastero per la Comunicazione - Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Article 217. Retrieved 8 June 2022.
  19. ^ Allen Jr., John L. (7 June 2022). "New HR office could be real revolution at heart of Pope's reform". Crux. Retrieved 8 June 2022.
  20. ^ "Cardinal Pell no longer prefect of Vatican's economy secretariat". Catholic News Agency. 26 February 2019. Retrieved 27 February 2019.
  21. ^ "Comunicato della Sala Stampa della Santa Sede, 29.06.2017" (Press release) (in Italian). Vatican Press Office. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2019.
  22. ^ "Rinunce e nomine, 14.11.2019" (Press release). Holy See Press Office. 14 November 2019. Retrieved 14 November 2019.
  23. ^ "Resignations and Appointments, 30.11.2022" (Press release). Holy See Press Office. 30 November 2022. Retrieved 30 November 2022.