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Render Unto Rome: The Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church

by Jason Berry

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862244,962 (3.1)1
Examines the way finances are managed in the Catholic Church. Berry argues that the organization is being damaged by secrecy and irresponsible decisions, and exposes the secrecy and deceit that run counter to the values of the Church.
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I'd have liked to give a book on such an important topic as many stars as possible, but, like many other readers, I found the structure jumbled and the details given often tedious and irrelevant. It's a huge topic to tackle, and I'm sure it was difficult to find a through-line, and to choose how much detail to use, but, for me, the contextual details about what inspired someone to be a priest, or what bound a lay person to a particular church did not require leaping back to their birth, or tracing the history of a school of thought or movement through 200 years. The book is well researched, and the author clearly knows their stuff, it's a pity it is not written with greater efficiency and clarity of focus. ( )
  Darcy-Conroy | Sep 28, 2015 |
No major book has examined the church’s financial underpinnings and practices with such journalistic force. Today the church bears scrutiny by virtue of the vast amounts of money (nearly $2 billion in the United States alone) paid out to victims of clergy abuse. Amid mounting diocesan bankruptcies, bishops have been selling off whole pieces of the infrastructure—churches, schools, commercial properties—while the nephew of one of the Vatican’s most powerful cardinals engaged in a lucrative scheme to profiteer off the enormous downsizing of American church wealth.
  SalemAthenaeum | Oct 4, 2011 |
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Examines the way finances are managed in the Catholic Church. Berry argues that the organization is being damaged by secrecy and irresponsible decisions, and exposes the secrecy and deceit that run counter to the values of the Church.

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