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A difficult year that required Vatican comparisons to cut costs. A year in which less St Peter’s penny was withdrawn than in the past to support the doctors’ service to the pope’s message, but churches in countries hardest hit by the pandemic have been helped further. This is what emerges from the consolidated financial statements of the Holy See, presented today by Father Juan Antonio Guerrero Alves, Governor of the Economics Secretariat. For the first time the financial statements of the APSA (Holy See Asset Management) are published for the fiscal year 2020, showing an operating result of €21.99 million, down 51.2 million compared to 2019 (it was 73.21 million). Asset management resulted in 15.29 million (-27.1 compared to 2019), property management 15.25 million (-8.3), and other assets with a deficit of 8.56 million (down 15.8 million from 2019). Despite the “low economic results”, largely due to the Covid crisis, Absa contributed to covering Korea’s deficit by 20.6 million.

“Last year the deficit was 11.1 million euros and this year 66.3 million euros,” explains Guerrero Alves in an interview with Vatican media. “Overall, better than we expected – confirms the Vatican Governor for Economics -. I cannot say that it was a good year. But given the circumstances, I can say that for 2020, before the outbreak of the epidemic, we budgeted a deficit of 53 million euros. When Covid appeared, it was Our deficit forecast in the best case scenario would be 68 million euros and in the worst case 146 million euros. In the medium scenario, the deficit was expected to be 97 million euros.” “So we adjusted the budget in March, and agreed to a deficit of 82 million euros. The result that occurred instead, with a deficit of 66.3 million euros, was slightly better than the best hypothetical scenarios, and much better than we expected in the revised budget for March,” Guerrero notes. Alves, who said, “The good news is that, thanks to the efforts made, the results are very close to those of the normal year. The normal deficit is less than 14.4 million euros compared to 2019: 64.8 million euros in 2020 compared to 79.2 million euros in 2019”.

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