South Asia and Beyond

In A First, Pope Orders Pay Cuts For Cardinals, Clerics

Beginning April 1, cardinals will take a pay cut of 10 per cent and the salaries of many other clerics working in the Vatican will be trimmed so that the jobs of lay employees can be saved, Pope Francis has ordered. The unprecedented step comes as the Holy See’s finances, already hit by years of deficits, have worsened due to the pandemic. The Vatican stares at an estimated 30 per cent dip in revenue this year.

St Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican museums, the latter a money spinner that received nearly six million paying visitors in 2019, were either closed or partly open for much of last year due to the pandemic.

Cardinals who work and live in the Vatican or in Rome are believed to earn about 4,000 to 5,000 euros as monthly salaries.

Apart from the cardinals, other clerics will see their salaries slashed between 3 per cent and 8 per cent. Pay hikes for all but the three lowest pay grades will be suspended till March 2023.