The Vatican flag. / Bohumil Petrik/CNA.
Vatican City, Jun 16, 2022 / 04:11 am (CNA).
Catholics in the United States made the largest contribution to the Vatican’s Peter’s Pence fund in 2021, with a donation of $13 million, representing almost 30% of all donations.
The income of the pope’s charitable fund increased overall by 2.9 million euros in 2021, quashing an earlier prediction that contributions would decrease by 15% from the year before.
According to a report published on Thursday, Peter’s Pence received a total of 46.9 million euros ($48.8 million) in 2021.
Donations from Catholics made up 44.4 million euros and 2.5 million euros came from other sources.
After U.S. Catholics, Catholics in Italy gave the second-largest amount at 5 million euros ($5.2 million). Germany was in third place, with 2.3 million euros, followed by South Korea, France, Spain, Brazil, Ireland, the Czech Republic, and Canada.
Peter’s Pence is the Holy See’s annual collection to finance the pope’s charitable works and other priorities, including the Roman Curia.
The annual collection is usually taken up in Catholic churches around the world on a weekend close to the June 29 Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.
The fund’s total collection in 2020 was 44 million euros (about $49 million), an 18% decrease from the year prior. Peter’s Pence also saw a fall in annual income of 23% from 2015 to 2019.
Total expenses in 2021 amounted to 65.3 million euros, leaving a deficit of 18.4 million, which was covered by Peter’s Pence reserve funds.
The Vatican used 55.5 million euros from Peter’s Pence to support the Holy See and its work and 9.8 million euros went toward providing direct assistance to aid projects around the world.
In January 2022, Father Juan A. Guerrero, S.J., prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, told Vatican News that while not all donations had yet been recorded, there was a marked decrease in the collection, which he expected to amount to at least 15%.