National Catholic Register

Daily News

New Vatican Secretary of State Praised as a ʻMessenger of Peaceʼ

Archbishop Pietro Parolin gets high marks from Venezuela's top Church leader for how he handled many diplomatic challenges.


| Posted 9/3/13 at 5:31 PM

Alan Holdren/CNA

CARACAS, Venezuela — Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the new Vatican secretary of state, is getting praise from a Venezuelan cardinal, who said the archbishop was a “messenger of peace” in the South-American country.

“I think the Holy Father Francis has made a great appointment,” said Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino of Caracas.

“Archbishop Parolin is a well-prepared bishop with a great capacity to work,” the cardinal said. “He is a very intelligent man, with extensive experience in the Church’s international affairs; and here in Venezuela he did great work in service to the Church and to the Venezuelan people.”

During his time as apostolic nuncio to Venezuela, Archbishop Parolin was a great promoter of dialogue, said Cardinal Urosa.

“He took part in the meetings between the government of Venezuela and the bishops' conference, which were very positive for the country and which we hope will continue,” he added.

Cardinal Urosa said Archbishop Parolin proved to be “a true messenger of peace in Venezuela,” and he played a lead role in “difficult negotiations for the Church” with Vietnam, China and Russia.

“He acted with discretion and prudence and played an important role in the process of bringing the Church and the government together,” he said.

Archbishop Parolin “is a man of great experience in diplomacy,” Cardinal Urosa said, adding that when Benedict XVI “decided to appoint him as his ambassador in Caracas in 2009, I didn’t think he would be here for long, as he is a man of great prestige at the Vatican.”

The cardinal said Archbishop Parolin would continue to carry out his duties in Venezuela until mid-October, when he will move to the Vatican to assume his duties from the outgoing secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone.