New charges emerge in Becciu investigation (CNA) Vatican journalists have unearthed new details about potential charges against Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu, including allegations that the cardinal steered contracts and loans toward his brother’s business. The Catholic News Agency reports that Gianluigi Torzi, a businessman arrested by the Vatican in June, has cooperated with prosecutors exploring suspicious Vatican transactions.
Pope appoints special prosecutor (Catholic Herald) Pope Francis has appointed a special prosecutor, the Vatican disclosed on September 28. Although the announcement did not identify the case involved, the prosecutor—Gianluca Perone, an expert in commercial law—is expected to probe the financial dealings of Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu.
German cardinal: 'Synodal path' as danger to Church unity (CNA) Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki of Cologne fears that the “Synodal path” promoted by the German bishops’ conference could cause a split within the universal Church. Speaking in Rome to a gathering of the former students of Joseph Ratzinger, the cardinal voiced his concern “that it is the tradition and interpretative communion with the universal Church that is called into question here.”
Trump to address 'virtual' Al Smith event; Biden uncertain (New York archdiocese) The Al Smith dinner will be a virtual event this year, the New York archdiocese has announced. President Trump will address the event, to be held on Thursday, October 1. The Biden campaign has not yet responded to an invitation. The Al Smith event, a fundraiser for archdiocesan charities, traditionally includes light-hearted talks by both major-party presidential candidates.
Shakeup at St. Louis archdiocese over handling of immigration webinar (St. Louis Post-Dispatch) Tony Messenger, who won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Commentary, criticized the archdiocese’s decision to place the director of its Peace and Justice Commission on leave. An archdiocesan spokesman, responding to an immigration webinar, said that “the Church doesn’t necessarily disagree with some of what they were sharing, but their opinions are their own and are not fully accurate representations of teachings of the archdiocese on immigration.”
Powerful Vatican Cardinal Becciu resigns amid scandal (AP) Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu, 72, oversaw the internal affairs of the Roman Curia as Substitute (Sostituto) of the Secretariat of State from 2011 to 2018. Pope Francis created him a cardinal in the 2018 consistory and named him Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The prelate, as Edward Pentin notes, has been linked to financial scandals (see 2019 Phil Lawler analysis).
Papal encouragement for tourism industry workers (Zenit) “Today is also World Tourism Day,” Pope Francis said on September 27. “The pandemic has harshly struck this sector so important to so many countries. I offer my encouragement to those who work in tourism, particularly small family businesses and young people. I hope that everyone may soon pick themselves up again from the current difficulties.”
Arizona bishops: Vote no on marijuana legalization (Arizona Catholic Conference) “Legalizing the recreational use of marijuana sends a message to children that drug use is socially and morally acceptable,” the state’s bishops said in a statement. “It is anticipated that legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in Arizona will lead to more abuse by teens, increase child fatalities, and result in more societal costs ... We strongly oppose this dangerous proposal.”
Nun beatified in Naples (Napoli Canale 21 (YouTube, Italian)) “Let us give thanks to God for this new Blessed, an example of contemplation of the mystery of Calvary and tireless in the exercise of charity,” Pope Francis said of Blessed Maria Luigia of the Most Holy Sacrament (1826-1886), foundress of the Franciscan Sisters Adorers of the Holy Cross.
India: officials demolish parish Stations of the Cross (AsiaNews) Public officials have demolished a series of crosses, representing the Stations of the Cross, at a Christian village in the state of Karnataka. Officials explained that the crosses were installed without a proper permit. But Hindu shrines, also without permits, were left standing. Archbishop Peter Machado of Bangalore protested a “selective action carried out against Christians.”