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Vatican Radio

Exterior view of the Institute for the Works of Religion, commonly known as the Vatican Bank. - EPAExterior view of the Institute for the Works of Religion, commonly known as the Vatican Bank. – EPA

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis says the regulations of the current Pastor Bonus Apostolic Constitution for the Roman Curia are still fully in force until the ongoing reform process is completed and put into effect. He stressed that this present period of transition does not mean there is at present a legal vacuum at the Curia. The Pope’s reminder came in a letter addressed to the Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin released on Tuesday (27th October).

Pope Francis began the letter by saying that whilst the reform process established by him was going ahead as scheduled, he needed to bring to light “some problems” that have emerged and which he intended “to resolve without delay.” The pope said:

I wish to reaffirm that the present transitional period is not a time where there is a legal vacuum or “absence of laws” (vacatio legis) and therefore the current Apostolic Constitution Pastor Bonus regulating the Roman Curia “is still in force” and all its norms must be respected.

The Pope reiterated that the hiring or transferring of employees within the Curia and all other Vatican and Apostolic See organizations must be carried out without breaching the current limits on staffing levels. He also reminded that the hiring and transfer of employees requires the authorization of the Secretary of State and their pay must respect the current parameters for salaries within the Vatican.

He urged Cardinal Parolin to bring this matter to the attention of all the heads of the Dicasteries, offices and organizations of the Roman Curia and the Governorate, especially those issues that require greater attention, and ask them to be vigilant in ensuring the regulations of the Pastor Bonus Constitution are fully respected.