Rome was not built in a day, nor the Vatican, and less its present opulence. Has its roots in the fourth century of the Christian era, when the Emperor Constantine converted to Christianity and made available to the Pope Sylvester I a colossal Fortunately, it actually turned into the 1st Pope rich history. The Catholic Church is the only religious organization in the world that has as an independent state headquarters: Vatican City. With its 2 Km2 Vatican is much smaller than many golf courses in the world, and to follow it without haste does not take much more than an hour; Counting his riches, however, take considerably longer. The modern opulence Vatican relies on the generosity of Benito Mussolini , who thanks to the signing of the Lateran Treaty between his government and the Vatican, gave the Catholic Church a number of safeguards and security measures.
The “Holy See” got the recognition as a sovereign state, the benefit of tax exemption of their property for the benefit of their citizens, they had to pay duties so imported from abroad. He was granted diplomatic immunity and its diplomats started to enjoy post-privileges of the profession, as well as foreign diplomats accredited to the Holy See. Mussolini promised to introduce the teaching of the Catholic religion in all schools in the country and let the institution of marriage under the patronage of Canon Law, which did not admit divorce.
The benefits were enormous given the Vatican including tax benefits, were predominant. In 1933, the Vatican once again demonstrated its ability to engage in lucrative deals with the fascist governments. The 1929, signed with Mussolini, was followed by another between the Holy See and the 3rd Reich of Hitler.
The manager Francesco Pacelli was one of the key figures of the pact with Mussolini, his brother Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli, the future Pope Pius XII was in charge of negotiating as Vatican Secretary of State, signing a treaty with Hitler’s Germany. Pius XII knew Germany. It was nuncio in Berlin during World War I and then as Secretary of State of Pius XI, had numerous presentations to the course he was taking German politics. As such, intervened decisively in the encyclical of Pius XI, known as “Mit brennender Sorge” (which translates “With Burning Concern”).
The initiative of the encyclical left, contrary to popular belief, the German bishops, the first draft was written in Rome by Cardinal Faulhaber. The then Cardinal Pacelli, who speak German, gave definitive form, presented to Pius XI, was signed and publicada.A despite constant pressure and great world, Pope Pius XII always refused to excommunicate Hitler and Mussolini, his pontificate was marked by adopting a false pose of neutrality.
When the Nazis invaded Poland, Pius XII refused to condemn the invasion; One of the biggest advantages that the Vatican would very lucrative agreement he had with Hitler was Kirchensteuer confirmation, or a church tax, is a state tax that even now must pay the German believers, and can only escape if they renounce their religion. In practice, very few who renounce it. This tax alone represents between 8 and 10% of total tax collected by the German government.