VATICAN CITY — The Holy See last year sustained its largest budget deficit of the past decade. But Vatican City State, which includes the income-generating Vatican Museums and Vatican post office, ended 2011 with a surplus of 21.8 million euros ($27 million).
The budget of the Holy See, which includes the offices of the Roman Curia and its communications outlets such as Vatican Radio, recorded a deficit of 14.9 million euros ($18.4 million) at the end of 2011. It was the largest budget deficit recorded in the past decade and reversed the 2010 surplus of 9.8 million euros ($12 million).
Total expenditures for the Holy See in 2011 were 263.7 million euros ($326.4 million) with 248.8 million euros ($308 million) in revenues.
The Vatican blamed the deficit on “the negative trend of global financial markets.”
The majority of the Holy See’s expenditures were related to wages and other personnel costs for 2,832 people.
The budget of the Holy See includes the Vatican Secretariat of State and its diplomatic missions around the world, Vatican congregations and pontifical councils, the Holy See’s investment portfolio and properties as well as the Vatican’s newspaper, radio, publishing house and television production center.
Its revenues included 49 million euros ($60.6 million) from the Vatican bank —which donates to the pope profits from its investments -- as well as contributions from dioceses and religious orders, and returns from the Holy See’s financial investments. Last year, despite continued economic difficulty around the world, donations from the faithful and Catholic organizations were up. Contributions from dioceses amounted to $32 million.