In October of 2013 Pope Francis summoned the German “Bling Bishop” to explain his lavish lifestyle. Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst made headlines for a multi-million dollar renovation to his residence that eventually involved German prosecutors. The “Bling Bishop” spent $42 million for construction and renovations on a new bishop’s residence, which was allocated for walk-in closets, a heated roof and $20,000 for the Bishop’s own private bathtub. However the “Bishop DeLuxe” denied the allegations and stated the money was for 10 projects that incurred additional costs for historical landmarks.
Pope Francis met with Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz van Elst of Limburg shortly after his lavish expenditure was reported; however other than the “Bling Bishop’s” resignation, ordered by Pope Francis and officially accepted on March 26, 2014, any other punitive details remained quiet, until Wednesday.
Pope Francis then ordered a Commission to examine the financial allegations that have occurred in Limburg, which included the “Bling Bishop’s” residence. Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst remained on leave until the matter was resolved. Monsignor Manfred Grothe has now been appointed as apostolic administrator “seed vacante.”
Residents of Limburg were embarrassed by the “Bishop DeLuxe” and called for his removal, but according to Holy See Press Release, the “Bling Bishop” is to be reassigned and the Vatican has asked the people of Germany to “accept the decision of the Holy See with docility and willingness to rediscover a climate of charity and reconciliation.”
In addition to the press release, the German Bishops' Conference also released its internal report on the reconstruction of the Limburg Dom.
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