In 2015, Vatican City had a population of approximately 1,000 people, with a population density of about 488 people per square kilometer. The economy was heavily reliant on donations from the Catholic Church and tourism. The main exports included postage stamps and coins. In recent years, Vatican City has also been developing its tourism industry to attract visitors from all over the world to its stunning architecture and art galleries. See ehealthfacts for Vatican City in the year of 2005.
Vatican City has close ties with many countries in Europe, particularly Italy and the Holy See. It is part of regional organizations such as the European Union (EU) and the Council of Europe (CoE). In addition to this, it has signed numerous bilateral agreements with other countries such as Italy for trade and economic cooperation. Its political system is based on an absolute monarchy where the Pope serves as both head of state and head of government. The Pope is appointed by cardinals for life or until resignation. The Vatican City Constitution guarantees freedom of speech, press, assembly and religion amongst other rights for all citizens.
Vatican City. On December 8, the Holy Year 2015–16 was inaugurated, which the Pope unexpectedly proclaimed during the spring. According to COUNTRYAAH, Vatican City is the capital of Holy See which is located in Southern Europe. The solemn dedication took place by Pope Francis opening the holy golden gate of St. Peter’s Basilica, which is normally walled. The Jubilee year opened on the day 50 years after the end of the Second Vatican Council.
- Also see AbbreviationFinder.org for Vatican country abbreviations, including geography, history, economy and politics.
During the year, a scandal broke in the Vatican which became a reminder that Francis is also head of state. Five people were brought to trial during the fall for having leaked and published secret documents from the papal administration. The leaked documents were the basis of two books in Italy that reveal the greed that characterizes the Vatican’s higher strata. This is where Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone stands out, who in order to renovate the luxury apartment he received at his retirement, used money from a fund that really belonged to a Catholic children’s hospital.
In 2015, the Pope traveled to the United States, Latin America and Africa. His visit to Cuba was particularly commendable, as it was Francis who mediated in the long negotiations that led to the icing between the US and Cuba. During the African travel, the visit to the war-torn Central African Republic became the most prominent.
In the fall, the Pope convened a bishopric in Rome dedicated to addressing the Church’s relationship with Catholic families around the world. Nearly 300 bishops from 120 countries gathered in Rome to share the pope’s views on sexual morality and family issues. The meeting, which is not decisive, gave the liberal forces a certain feeling that progress had been made, while the Conservatives could at the same time be calm in the assurance that none of the church’s dogmas is in danger.
In addition to the bishop’s meeting, the pope made a couple of personal decisions during the year in the area of family life. Without tapping into the Church’s doctrine, which does not recognize divorce, Francis has made it easier for Catholics to cancel a marriage. A cancellation may come about if the Church leadership in Rome finds that the marriage was invalid from the beginning. During the year, Francis also gave the parish priests permission to forgive women who have had an abortion if the woman expresses her regret during the holy year of jubilee.
Papal family. – Following the Motu proprio of Paul VI Pontificialis Domus of 28 March 1968, the pontifical family, which after the pontifical chapel is part of the papal household, is made up of the ecclesiastical and lay pontifical families.
The following belong to the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Family: the Substitute of the Secretariat of State for General Affairs, the Secretary of the Secretariat of State for Relations with States, the Almoner of His Holiness, the President of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, the Theologian of the Papal Household, the College of Apostolic Protonotaries by number of participants, the supernumerary apostolic Protonotaries, the pontifical master of ceremonies, the Prelates of honor of His Holiness, the Chaplains of His Holiness, the Preacher of the Papal Household. The following belong to the lay pontifical family: the assistants to the throne, the special delegate of the Pontifical Commission for the Vatican City State, the General Councilor of the Vatican City State, the Commander of the Pontifical Swiss Guard,
Before 1968 there were many other figures within the Pontifical Family, currently suppressed or merged into those listed above, who, for the exercise of their proper functions within the Pontifical Family, report to the Prefect of the Papal Household, who by virtue of the mentioned document of Paul I, combines in itself all those skills that are still relevant today and in the past were attributed to the Prefect of the Sacred Congregation Ceremonial, the Master of His Holiness Room, the Master of the Sacred Palaces Apostolic House, and to the Butler of His Holiness: offices that had great historical importance in the past and which are now suppressed.