Vatican denies free Christmas crib linked to corruption scandal

VATICAN CITY,  (Reuters) – The Vatican said yesterday there was no link between its decision to accept the gift of a nativity scene in St Peter’s Square and allegations that it had previously paid inflated prices to have them built.

This year’s larger-than-life Christmas tableau depicting the biblical scene of Jesus’s birth, worth about 90,000 euros ($120,000), was donated by the southern region of Basilicata, one of Italy’s poorest.

Some of the documents that sparked this year’s ‘Vatileaks’ scandal indicated that in 2009 the Vatican paid an Italian company six times that amount, about 550,000 euros ($720,000), to build its nativity scene in the square.

The letters, leaked to the media, mentioned the payment as an example of corruption in the city state’s business dealings.

Monsignor Giuseppe Sciacca, deputy governor of the Vatican City, was asked by reporters whether accepting a donated crib was a response to the scandal.

“This is exclusively the result of the offer by the Basilicata region to give us this gift, which, with a minimum of good sense, has been accepted,” he said.

In the leaked documents, Sciacca’s predecessor, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, said the exorbitant cost of the 2009 crib was an example of how the Vatican was losing money through corruption.

Comments

About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Most Read This Week

  1. Overseas-based Guyanese shot and robbed after leaving bank

  2. Escapee told cops accomplice gave him cash to travel to West Bank – Persaud

  3. Thirteen prisoners escape from Lusignan

  4. Lusignan 13 escaped via tunnel – Ramjattan

  5. Businessman testifies about runaround to report presidential assassination plot to cops

  6. Joel Ghansham loses $7.5m in burglary

  7. GPL sues Kwame McCoy for $143,000

  8. Updated: List of escapees today from Lusignan facility


Recommended For You