CNA Staff, Sep 25, 2020 / 05:45 am
Cardinal George Pell thanked Pope Francis Friday following the dramatic resignation of Vatican Cardinal Angelo Becciu.
In a statement sent to CNA Sept. 25, the former prefect of the Vatican Secretariat for the Economy said: “The Holy Father was elected to clean up Vatican finances. He plays a long game and is to be thanked and congratulated on recent developments.”
The cardinal issued the statement from Sydney, Australia, where he is living after his acquittal by Australia’s High Court in April on charges of sexual abuse. He spent 13 months in solitary confinement after he was given a six-year prison sentence following a trial in Melbourne, Victoria.
“I hope the cleaning of the stables continues in both the Vatican and Victoria,” Pell said.
Becciu resigned Sept. 24 as prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints and from the rights extended to members of the College of Cardinals.
The cardinal worked previously as the number two-ranking official in the Vatican’s Secretariat of State, and has been connected to an ongoing investigation of financial malfeasance at the secretariat.
Pell and Becciu had clashed over the reform of Vatican finances.
CNA has reported that in 2015 Becciu seemed to have made an attempt to disguise the loans on Vatican balance sheets by canceling them out against the value of the property purchased in the London neighborhood of Chelsea, an accounting maneuver prohibited by new financial policies approved by Pope Francis in 2014.