A Roman Observer: Debate has begun in the Vatican. But there is a problem: A lot of bishops do not seem too pleased about this. Not one bit.
New Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher has pledged to regain the confidence of Australian Catholics and the broader community in the wake of the church's sexual abuse scandal.
Pope Francis named the bishop of Parramatta and former auxiliary bishop of Sydney to succeed Cardinal George Pell, now prefect of the Vatican's Secretariat for the Economy.
"There can be no more excuses, no more cover-ups and the victims have to be put first," Fisher said.
The Catholic church in Australia is going through a period of scrutiny, he said.
The synod on the family will not open until Oct. 5, but some of its members are already debating one of its most controversial topics.
"Doctrine and pastoral practice cannot be contradictory. One cannot maintain the indissolubility of marriage by allowing the 'remarried' to receive Communion."
Among the nonvoting members of 38 observers and 16 experts appointed by the pope, the majority are laymen and laywomen, including 14 married couples.
Cardinal George Pell has outraged survivors of sexual abuse by clergy with comments given in a video testimony from the Vatican to an Australian government inquiry.
"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 bank's net profit for 2013 was 2.9 million euros, down from the 2012 net profits of 86.6 million euros.
The Council of Cardinals will meet again this week, presumably to consider an overall blueprint for a new structure of the Vatican's central bureaucracy.