Saturday, 2 July 2011

Praise the Lord: Vatican budget emerges from the red

The Vatican has announced its finances have returned to profit - after three consecutive years in the red. Its report said the Holy See saw revenues of €245.2m (£222m) against expenses of €235.3m in 2010. However, annual donations from churches worldwide - known as Peter's Pence - were down nearly $15m to $67.7m.

The Pope slumming it in the Basilica during hard times

The separately administered Vatican City State also made a €21m profit due to strong ticket sales at the Vatican Museums. The Vatican lost €4m in 2009 and was also in the red in 2008 and 2007. Most of the Vatican's outlay is to cover the activities of Pope Benedict XVI and services such as Vatican Radio which is broadcast on five continents in 40 different languages.

The Vatican began publishing annual financial reports in 1981 when Pope John Paul II set out to challenge perceptions that the Vatican was rich.