By DAVID GREENE and DAVID M. SIRIUSAPosted November 07, 2019 04:30:16 The Catholic Church is on the brink of collapse, with the Vatican having to rely on a tiny fraction of its $12.7 billion annual budget for the future.
In recent months, the church’s finances have been buffeted by scandals including a suspected sex abuse cover-up and the removal of an archbishop who had been criticized for the church-funded charity St. John’s wafer.
The Vatican, which was founded in 1516 by Pope Benedict XVI, has long been plagued by scandals and internal divisions.
But the latest revelations, which have emerged in recent weeks, have put the church in a new position of crisis.
As The Associated Press reported on Wednesday, the Vatican’s finances are already in dire straits and it has been forced to borrow from the International Monetary Fund and the European Union in an effort to meet a $2.8 billion deficit.
The church has said it has to borrow to meet the shortfall.
In its most recent financial report, the pope’s office said it is using the Vatican Bank to cover the shortfall and was in a dire financial situation.
But in a recent interview with the Catholic magazine L’Osservatore Romano, Benedict said he had no intention of reducing the Vatican bank’s capital, which it has about $5 billion.
He said the church is in a very precarious situation and is in danger of falling into a situation similar to Greece or Italy.
He called on the European Central Bank to “reassure the people of Europe and to save the people’s faith in the church.”
“We are on the verge of collapse,” Benedict said.
“This is a crisis, it is not something that is new,” he added.
Pope Francis has spoken frequently of his faith in God and the importance of the church.
In recent months he has been touring countries and meeting with faith leaders to preach his message of mercy and mercy for the poor.
The pope’s pontificate has sparked a wave of protests around the world.
Protests have taken place in the United States, Canada, Germany, Italy and Australia.
In Germany, a group of about 100 demonstrators rallied near the Vatican to demand the pope step down.
The demonstrators shouted “We are Rome!” and “I am Rome!” as they gathered.
In France, the president of the Paris chapter of the Catholic Church, the bishops union, Cardinal Raymond Burke, told Reuters the church needs to take a step back to address the problems.
“We need to look at our finances and take stock of our current position and what needs to be done,” Burke said.
“We must understand that we are in a situation of crisis.”