Efforts to reform and professionalize Vatican financial services and oversight continued as Pope Francis dismissed the all-Italian five-member board that oversees the Vatican’s financial watchdog agency on June 5, in a move widely interpreted as a blow to the Vatican old guard. According to a Vatican statement, the pope named five experts from Switzerland, Singapore, the United States and Italy to replace those who were removed from the board of the Financial Information Authority (A.I.F.), the Holy See’s internal regulatory agency. The five outgoing members had been expected to serve five-year terms ending in 2016. The sole American on the new board is Juan Zarate, a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and visiting lecturer at Harvard Law School. The pope has taken a hard line on cleaning up the Vatican finance system. According to a report by the Italian news agency ANSA, two senior officials at the bank have also been eased into early retirement after reports by two separate ad hoc committees appointed by Francis to study Vatican finances.
Vatican Finance Reform Continues