Pope sacks leadership of worldwide Catholic charity, names commissioner

By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis sacked the entire leadership of the worldwide Roman Catholic Church on Tuesday and appointed a commissioner to handle it after allegations of abuse and humiliation by staff.

Catholic Relief, working in more than 200 countries; Executives of the Vatican-based Caritas Internationalis (CI) of 162 development and social service organizations participated.

The dismissal of the executive ranks of CI, which has more than a million employees and volunteers worldwide, was announced in a papal order issued by the Vatican.

In a separate statement, the Vatican’s development department, which oversees CI, said a review of the working environment this year by external management and psychological experts had found ill health and bad management practices at its headquarters.

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Current and former employees verbal abuse; He spoke to Reuters about issues of popularity and general human resource mismanagement. CI is based in a Vatican-owned building in Rome.

“While no evidence of financial mismanagement or sexual misconduct has emerged, the board’s work has revealed other important topics and areas for urgent attention,” the development office said in a statement.

“Real deficiencies in management and procedures were noted, which seriously affected team spirit and staff morale,” it said.

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“While financial matters are well managed and fundraising targets are regularly achieved, management standards and procedures need to be improved,” it said.

A CI spokesperson referred all questions in a statement.

Among those affected by the order is Cardinal Luis Antonio Turgel, who is nominally president of the cardinalate but is not involved in day-to-day operations. His main job at the Vatican is as head of the Church’s missionary arm.

The presidency has traditionally been held by a cardinal.

Tagle, a Filipino who is often considered a future pope, will step down as president, but will remain as commissioner to maintain ties with the country’s Caritas offices and prepare for elections for new leadership next year.

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Two current Caritas insiders and one former employee all told Reuters on condition of anonymity that the order was aimed at the management practices of the outgoing secretary-general and the board.

The ex-employee had to quit his job in offices outside of Italy because of bullying, He said it was due to fear and ritual humiliation.

Except for Tagle and one bishop, all CI executive members are lay people.

(Reporting by Philip Pullella; Editing by Nick Macfie and Bill Berkrot)


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