‘We must stop leaking secrets to the media’

Pope Francis must end the scandal of Church secrets being leaked to newspapers, Austrian Cardinal Christoph Schönborn said, underlining one of the challenges facing the new Roman Catholic leader.

Pope emeritus Benedict, who stepped down last month, had to deal with the “Vatileaks” case in which his butler was convicted of stealing personal papal documents and passing them to the media.

The documents alleged corruption within the Vatican and infighting between senior prelates over the running of the Vatican bank and several projects in Italy.

Archbishop Schönborn, himself seen as a leading contender in the conclave that elected Francis, was shocked that details of confidential conversations between cardinals had been made public as they gathered to choose a successor to Benedict.

“There is really a massive need for reform,” said Schönborn.

“We are very much hoping that Pope Francis succeeds in following up the steps initiated by Pope Benedict, completes them and creates order,” he told a news conference.

“It’s a scandal that cardinals can meet in the most trusted room, where we have sworn an oath that we won’t pass anything on, and the next day our messages can be read word for word in the Italian newspapers.”

Archbishop Schönborn was referring to reports in the Italian press of clashes in preliminary meetings before the conclave that saw Argentine Jorge Bergoglio selected as leader of the world’s 1.2bn Roman Catholics.

Archbishop Schönborn said most Vatican employees were loyal and committed but were being undermined by the work of a few.

“There are lots of very loyal, competent, very engaged colleagues who don’t deserve to see the Vatican’s image damaged by a few black sheep.”

“We hope for a good cleaning of the house.”

More on this topic

A Pope too many: Does Pope Francis have a mutiny on his hands?A Pope too many: Does Pope Francis have a mutiny on his hands?

Pope dons safety helmet for earthquake-hit cathedral visitPope dons safety helmet for earthquake-hit cathedral visit

Bishops give guarded response to wording change for the Lord's PrayerBishops give guarded response to wording change for the Lord's Prayer

Pope Francis takes migrant children for a spin in his popemobilePope Francis takes migrant children for a spin in his popemobile


Lifestyle

These green pancakes are topped with avocado, tomato and cottage cheese.How to make Jamie Oliver’s super spinach pancakes

Who else can pull off a look described as a ‘hip-hop Michelin woman’?As her new EP drops, this is why there will never be a style icon quite like Missy Elliott

The classic white-tipped look is once again in favour, and celebs are loving it.The French manicure is back – 5 modern ways to try the trend

The A-Listers hiding in plain sight: As Rihanna is spotted at the cricket, who are the celebs who have been living under our noses in Ireland? Ed Power reports.Celebs in plain sight: The A-Listers living under our noses in Ireland

More From The Irish Examiner