VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis imposed new financial accountability regulations on the Vatican’s multimillion-dollar saint-making machine Thursday after uncovering gross abuses that were subsequently revealed in two books.

The rules require external vigilance over individual Vatican bank accounts created for beatification and canonization causes, as well as regular budgeting and accounting to make sure the donations from the faithful are being used as intended.

The reforms were imposed after Francis tasked a fact-finding commission to investigate Vatican finances, including at the Vatican’s saints office. Two books by Italian journalists, based on the commission’s confidential findings, revealed that the Vatican’s secretive saint-making process brought in hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations for each saintly candidate but had virtually no financial oversight as to how the money was spent.

The books estimated the average cost for each beatification at around $550,000, with much of it going to a few people with contracts to do time-consuming investigations into the candidates’ lives. The family of one investigator also had the Vatican monopoly on printing the documentation for each cause.

While candidates who inspire wealthy donors would sprint ahead, those with less wealthy fans would languish. American saints often cost the most precisely because the most money was donated, and the postulator could spend it on the best researchers, according to the book “Avarice.”

The new rules name an administrator for each saintly cause that will keep tabs on expenditures and donations.