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Thursday, July 8, 2004


VATICAN CITY, JUL 8, 2004 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Fr. Pierre Warin, president of the seminary of the diocese of Namur, Belgium, and episcopal vicar, as auxiliary of the same diocese (area 8,067, population 698,000, Catholics 550,000, priests 823, permanent deacons 57, religious 1373), Belgium. The bishop-elect was born in Rocourt, Belgium in 1948 and was ordained a priest in 1972.
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 8, 2004 (VIS) - Cardinal Sergio Sebastiani, president of the Prefecture of the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, announced this morning in a press conference on the 2003 Consolidated Financial Statement that Holy See closed the year with a deficit of 9.56 million euro, lower than the 2002 deficit of 13.5 million euro. It is the third consecutive year that the Holy See has had a deficit following the period of surpluses up to the year 2000.

  Cardinal Sebastiani said that, starting with the end of the year 2000, the world economy entered into a phase of crisis that reflected the effects of the turbulence provoked by different kinds of events such as the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York, the last series of terrorist attacks, the war in Iraq and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

  "Only since the second half of 2003," he said, "was a certain recovery of stock activity evident, but in Europe investments are still lacking and above all demand is weak."

  In terms of the institutional activity of the Holy See (Secretariat of State, Congregations, Councils, Tribunals, the Synod of Bishops and various other offices), the president indicated that this sector closed the year with a deficit of 19.7 million euro, slightly lower than 2002.  "The volume of donations that came to the Holy See in 2003," he said, "showed in its various components a decrease, due also to the increased value of the euro in relation to the U.S. dollar and to other currencies, falling from roughly 85.4 million to 79.6 million."

  The president of the prefecture said that the sector of financial activities (7 consolidated administrations, the most important of which is the Extraordinary Section of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, APSA) had a net deficit of 11.6 million euro. The real estate sector, he continued, closed with a surplus of 22.4 million euro, compared to 19.1 million in 2002.  The activity of the media institutions (Vatican Radio, the Vatican Printing Office, L'Osservatore Romano newspaper, the Vatican Publishing House and Vatican Television), closed with a deficit of 1.2 million euros, compared to a 1.7 million deficit in 2002.
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 8, 2004 (VIS) - The 2003 Consolidated Financial Statements for both the Holy See and Vatican City State were presented at a press conference held this morning in the Holy See Press Office. Cardinal Sergio Sebastiani and Bishop Franco Croci, president and secretary of the Prefecture of the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, made the presentation, which included a summary of the 38th meeting of the Council of Cardinals for the Study of Organizational and Economic Problems of the Holy See, which was held on Tuesday, July 6 under the presidency of Cardinal Angelo Sodano, secretary of State.

  The following cardinals, all members of that council, attended the meeting: Joachim Meisner, Bernard Francis Law, Jose Freire Falcao, Roger Michael Mahony, Camillo Ruini, Jean-Claude Turcotte, Ricardo Maria Carles Gordo, Ivan Dias, Cormac Murphy-O'Connor and Edward Michael Egan. Representing offices of the Holy See were Cardinal Sebastiani, Bishop Croci, Cardinal Edmund Szoka, president of the Governorate of Vatican City State and Cardinal Attilio Nicora and Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, president and secretary of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See (APSA).

  The 2003 Consolidated Financial Statement for the Holy See showed a deficit of $11,840,196 (Euro 9,569,456). Income totaled $251,776,543 (€203,659,498) and expenses amounted to $263,732,738 (€213,228,954). The report states that the greater part of expenses were due to the ordinary and extraordinary administration of the various organisms of the Holy See: Secretariat of State (two sections), 9 congregations, 3 tribunals, 11 pontifical councils, the Apostolic Chamber, APSA, Prefecture of the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, Prefecture of the Papal Household, Office of the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff, Holy See Press Office, Vatican Information Service, Central Office of Church Statistics, 5 pontifical commissions and committees, 9 institutions linked to the Holy See, the Synod of Bishops, and 6 pontifical academies. To these central offices of the Holy See must be added 118 pontifical representations to Nations and to international organizations.

  There are 2,674 people who work in the Roman Curia: 755 ecclesiastics, 344 religious and 1,575 lay people. There are about 1,000 retired persons.

  The deficit for Vatican City State, 45 percent lower than 2002, was $10,908,401 (€8,820,678). This was caused by extraordinary expenses for the realization of various works and the restructuring or restoration of several buildings in addition to the $12,918,557 (€10,452,543) that was contributed to Vatican Radio to help cover its deficit. There were also great expenditures for the maintenance, restoration and preservation of the Holy See's artistic patrimony, visited by millions of people every year. Vatican City State employs 1,534 people.

  The 2003 Peter's Pence collection totaled $55,842,854. The Holy Father used these monies for charitable purposes, in particular for the populations of countries struck by calamities of various natures: earthquakes, floods, wars, famine, epidemics, and refugees and for aid to Catholic works in the Holy Land that are experiencing economic difficulties due to the tensions and conflicts in that region.

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