International News

Vatican Official Under Investigation

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) – Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, the head of the Pontifical Council for the Family and lead Vatican organizer of September’s World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, is under investigation by Italian prosecutors for alleged embezzlement.

Published reports in European media outlets say the investigation stems from 2011 when the archbishop led the Diocese of Terni in Italy, and diocesan funds may have been used improperly in a scheme to purchase then resell at a profit a 14th-century Italian castle.

A diocesan financial officer at the time was also the head of an Italian firm that purchased the property, which today remains undeveloped.

Prosecutors named the archbishop as one of the people being investigated. No charges have been filed.

Archbishop Paglia said he has not done anything illegal. “Obviously, I remain at the disposition of the investigating authorities, trusting completely in earthly justice.”

In Philadelphia, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput said, “I assure everyone that matters facing him do not impact our plans for September. We continue to work without interruption and joyfully anticipate welcoming our Holy Father and the world to Philadelphia later this year.”

The World Meeting of Families will host tens of thousands of people from 150 countries for four days.