"This should, we hope, result in financial gains generating revenue for the work of the church, especially in the service of the wider society."
Seven months after hiring a consulting firm to study the Vatican's communications structures, the Vatican has set up an 11-member committee -- which includes Our Sunday Visitor's Greg Erlandson -- to suggest ways to increase collaboration and cut costs.
Australian Cardinal George Pell, prefect of the Vatican Secretariat for the Economy and a member of Pope Francis' Council of Cardinals, announced the formation of the committee at a news conference Wednesday.
The Vatican's final budget figures for 2013 showed a deficit on the part of the Roman Curia, but a strong performance by entities falling under the separate Vatican City State budget covered the deficit and helped the Vatican end the year 8.5 million euros ($11.6 million) in the black.
The Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, the Vatican's budget management office, presented the consolidated budgets for the Holy See and for Vatican City State to members of the new Council for the Economy on Saturday, and a summary was released by the Vatican press office Tuesday.
The Vatican bank's net profit for 2013 was 2.9 million euros, down from the 2012 net profits of 86.6 million euros.
One thing the pope and his Council of Cardinals discussed was how bishops currently are chosen for dioceses around the world.
Although the Legionaries of Christ have returned to a normal form of self-governance, the Vatican named a top canon lawyer as a special adviser to the religious community.
Job creation, respect for the environment and the second chances God grants to every sinner were recurring themes as Pope Francis visited the southern Italian region of Molise on Saturday.
"We cannot resign ourselves to losing a whole generation of young people who don't have the strong dignity of work," Pope Francis said during a meeting with the region's young people in the town of Castelpetroso. "Work gives dignity."
Pope Francis told abuse survivors that "despicable actions" caused by clergy have been hidden for too long and had been "camouflaged with a complicity that cannot be explained."
The Vatican formally recognized an international association of exorcists, giving the group autonomy as an organization of Catholics not operating in the name of the church.
Sympathizing with all the unknowns facing young people today, Pope Francis -- half joking -- said it is easier for a pope because he knows where his earthly life will end.